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'Mr. Consistent' Strikes Again In Melbourne

“Mr. Consistent” has lived up to his name yet again at the Australian Open. Tomas Berdych, who has finished in the Top 20 of the ATP Rankings for 12 consecutive seasons, reached his seventh quarter-final in Melbourne on Monday. The 19th-seeded Czech avoided a dogfight with Italian Fabio Fognini, defeating the 25th seed 6-1, 6-4, 6-4 to advance to the last eight.

“I'm enjoying it a lot,” said Berdych, who struggled with a lower back problem in 2017. “I'm glad to be back in the shape that I am right now, which is finally healthy and that makes the difference. I can play freely, I can have joy from my tennis [and] I can enjoy the time being on court. The results are coming with that."

Berdych improved to 44-14 in Melbourne, and he has a chance to avenge his 2017 loss at the season's first Grand Slam.

Berdych will next face either second seed Roger Federer, who overcame Hungary's Marton Fucsovics later in the day. Berdych fell to Federer in the third round last year. The Swiss right-hander leads their FedEx ATP Head2Head series 19-6 and has won their past eight match-ups. Read Report

Tomas Berdych advances to the Australian Open quarter-finals for the seventh time.
“If there is any plan or any key to success [to beating Federer], then I would like to know that," said Berdych. "I'm definitely going to go out there, try my best, try to play good tennis, and believe myself that I can do it. I did it in the past, and also, I did it at the Slams, so I know how it is to beat him over the best-of-five sets. But, obviously, he’s an extremely tough opponent.”

“It's a really great moment to be back on this court... I'm enjoying every single minute,” Berdych said after winning on Margaret Court Arena.

The 6'5” right-hander has twice made it a step further Down Under. In 2014, he fell in the semi-finals to eventual champion Stan Wawrinka; in 2015, Berdych lost to Andy Murray.

But he had all the answers against Fognini, who fell to 1-12 during his past 13 meetings against Top 20 players at Grand Slam championships. Berdych hit 37 winners, including 10 aces, and broke the Italian six times, including in the seventh game of the third set.


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