American Jenson Proxby upsets Casper Rudd II. Djokovic advances

Upsets were the topic of the day on day four of the 2023 Australian Open. There were many upsets (more on those later), but the most impressive and important of the group was American Jenson Broxby’s defeat of Casper Rudd, the men’s second seed.

Brooksby, at just 22 years old, defeated Rudd 6-3, 7-5, 6(4)-7, 6-2 in four hours. It was a tight game, but Rudd couldn’t consistently spot Broxby, who plays with an unusual style and has the ability to make terrifying, acrobatic returns while keeping the ball low. He simply outmaneuvered Rudd, who was unprepared for what Prosby sent his way.

Over the past two days, the unranked Americans have clinched the top two men’s singles rankings at the tournament. Watch out for the world. Perhaps American tennis will return.

Other disturbances noted

Ranked players were dropping like flies on Thursday. The Americans were not responsible for all the disturbances, but they certainly led the attack. Here’s all the upsets from Day 4 (except for Roode’s loss to Broxby).

  • The second seed in women’s singles was also knocked out, as Ons Jabeur lost to unseeded Marketa Vondrousova in three sets.

  • The road ended for American No. 8 Taylor Fritz, who lost a thrilling five-setter to Australian Alexei Popyrin.

  • No. 9 Veronika Kudrmitova lost to American Katie Volynets.

  • No. 12 Alexander Zverev lost to American Michael Moh.

  • No. 16 Annette Kontaveit was taken down by Magda Linette.

How did the Americans do?

The Americans on the fourth day had more casualties than on any other day so far, but the gains were massive. Here are all of Thursday’s American winners (with the exception of Broxby’s win over Rudd):

  • World No. 115 Katie Volynets beat ninth seed Veronika Kudmitova 6-4 2-6 6-2 in the qualifier.

  • Michael Moh, one of two losing Americans to reach the tournament, defeated No. 12 Alexander Zverev 6(1)-7, 6-4, 6-3, 6-2.

  • Ben Shelton won his Australian Open debut by narrowly defeating qualifier Nicholas Jarry 7-6(3), 7-6(3), 7-5.

  • JJ Wolfe beat No. 23 Diego Schwartzman 6-1, 6-4, 6-4.

  • Tommy Paul defeated Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 6-2, 2-6, 6(4)-7, 6-3, 6-4.

Sadly, the road ended for Shelby Rogers, Taylor Townsend, Lauren Davis, Claire Liu, Maxime Cressi, Dennis Kudla, Brandon Holt and eighth seed Taylor Fritz. But despite the Americans’ heavy losses on Day 4, the 13 will head into the third round. According to ESPN, that’s the most at the Australian Open since 2004.

Other results

  • Novak Djokovic defeated 4th seed Enzo Quakod to advance to the third round after dealing with annoyances and a possible flare-up of his hamstring injury.

  • Fourth seed Caroline Garcia beat Laila Fernandez in straight sets after the first set went to a tiebreaker.

  • Fifth seed Aryna Sabalenka extended her winning streak to six matches by defeating Shelby Rogers.

  • And Andrei Rublev, the fifth seed, advanced in the men’s singles after defeating Emil Rossovori.

Other winners included Holger Rohn, Karolina Pliskova, Belinda Bencic and Camila Giorgi.

Highlight of the day

If you want to see some amazing tennis, take a look at what 35-year-old Andy Murray was doing against Thansi Kokkinakis on Thursday.

As of the time of publication, Murray and Kokkinakis still play. Loved by two sets, Murray made a stunning comeback at 1:30am in Melbourne. They are now limited to two sets each and play the deciding set, which will likely end near 4:00 am local time.

Update, 12:15 PM EST: The match actually ended just after 4:00 am local time, and Murray improbably completed his comeback and defeated Kokkinakis. The match lasted five hours and 45 minutes and was the longest of Murray’s long career.

What to watch on the fifth day

Pack everyone. Round 3 starts on Friday and there will be some great matches to watch. Here are some contests among the best seeds that you will be able to get your attention:

  • No. 1 Iga Swiatek vs. Kristina Bosca

  • No. 3 Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Talon Griksspor

  • No. 6 Felix Auger-Aliassime vs. No. 28 Francisco Sirondolo

  • No. 10 Hubert Hurkacz vs. No. 20 Denis Shapavalov

  • No. 11 Cameron Norrie vs. Jerry Lischka

And it will be another big day for Americans. Here is every American playing on Friday and his opponent.

  • No. 3 Jessica Pegula (American top seed remaining at the Australian Open) vs. Marta Kostyuk

  • No. 7 Coco Gauff vs. Bernarda Pera (both Americans)

  • No. 10 Madison Keys vs. No. 24 Victoria Azarenka

  • No. 13 Daniel Collins vs. No. 22 Elena Rybakina

  • No. 16 Francis Tiafoe vs. No. 18 Karen Khachanov

  • No. 29 Sebastian Korda vs. No. 7 Daniil Medvedev

  • Mackenzie McDonald vs. No. 31 Yoshihito Nishioka

The full Day 5 schedule can be viewed here.

American Jenson Proxby celebrates after defeating Norway’s Casper Ruud in their second-round match at the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, January 19, 2023. (AP Photo/Dita Alangkara)

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