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Can Aussies Hewitt & Tomic make it to Australian Open 3rd round?

Tomic and HewittAustralian Open Round Two matches, Thursday, January 21, 2016, Melbourne Park, watch on Seven Network

David Ferrer ($1.13) vs. Lleyton Hewitt ($5.40)

Bernard Tomic ($1.17) vs. Simone Bolelli ($4.60)

Hewitt vs. Ferrer


The Aussie tennis great has at least one more match to stave off retirement for a little longer after he knocked over fellow Australian James Duckworth in straight sets, 7-6 (7-5), 6-2, 6-4, to make it through to the second round of his last ever open.

Hewitt has been steadfast since last year in his decision to retire after the Australian Open and will take up a post as Australia’s Davis Cup captain.

The punters are giving him little hope of writing a fairy tale and taking out the title of his home Grand Slam, giving him write your own ticket odds of $401.

But the guts, determination and skill that have made him a fan favourite as he fades into tennis history were all on display against Duckworth, who played well, but might have been a little overawed by the spectacle – and the crowd rooting for his much loved opponent.

Speaking after the match, an emotional Hewitt heaped praise on the Melbourne Park crowd for its support throughout his career.

“Once I got into the match and the crowd, look at this…,” he said as he was cut off by cheering from the stands.

“This is what I’m going to miss most.

“This adrenaline buzz, coming out here. Hearing Craig (Willis) announce you are from Australia, it does not get any better.

Hewitt knows he is up against it against the Spaniard Ferrer, who is ranked number eight in the world and easily accounted for German Peter Gojowczyk, 6-4, 6-4, 6-2 in round one.

“It was a good match tonight,” Hewitt said.

“Ducks is an awkward opponent, he serves really well.

“David Ferrer is a totally different customer.

“He is one of the best players in the world, number eight, I think at the moment.

“I have so much respect for his game in the way he goes about it and it will be a real battle.”

A former world number one, Hewitt will retire as one of the most successful Australians of the modern era, having taken out both a Wimbledon and US Open title in his glittering career.

Our tips:

David Ferrer to win ($1.13)

David Ferrer to win 3-1 ($3.50)

Lleyton Hewitt to win the first set ($3.32)

Sorry Lleyton, this is the end of the road. Yes, we know that sounds unpatriotic, but this is the eighth best player in the world up against a guy at the end of his career who was ranked huber 308 at the start of the tournament. There is not much history to rely on here – the pair has only met three times, all at grand slams and all on different surfaces. Hewitt won the first bout between these two – almost 10 years ago at Wimbledon on grass – but Ferrer has won the previous two, at the French Open on clay in 2008 and at the US Open in 2012 on hard court. With nostalgia on his side or not, no one in their right mind is picking Lleyton to win this one. We’d love to see a win for the ages, but we just don’t think it’s possible. What we do think is possible is a fast start for Lleyton. Could he nab the first set? We reckon he can. If he can’t we do think he has one set in him and that could be where the value lies.

Tomic vs. Bolelli

While Hewitt is expected to be shot down by his opponent in the second round, Tomic, ranked 18 in the world, should have no trouble with the plucky Italian Simone Bolelli.

Tomic, who at times battles with Nick Kyrgios in the “talented but unstable star” rankings, had to fight hard to knock over Uzbekistan’s Denis Istomin 6-7 (4-7), 6-4, 6-4, 6-4, enduring a 20 minute delay after a spectator took ill in the stands.

Tomic said he feared for the spectator’s life when paramedics were called during the fourth set. The fan was taken from the stadium on a stretcher and the match resumed.

“Potentially, someone’s dying and we’re not sure what’s going on,” Tomic said.

“At one stage, I was looking directly at the lady.

“It was not a good moment.

“I felt very, very sad.

He found the going tough at times against the Uzbek, but dug deep to eke out the win.

“He was playing so well in that first set … he was serving so well,” Tomic said.

“I’ve played Denis many times.

“Last time he beat me so I knew it was going to be difficult.

“He’s beaten very good players in the past.

“I knew he would come out like that.”

All four of Bolelli’s sets went to a tie break in his first round win over America’s Brian Baker, the 7-6 (8-6), 7-6 (7-3), 6-7 (2-7), 7-6 (7-5) win taking nearly four hours to complete.

Despite battling against Istomin, Tomic is expected to roll through to the third round.

“I’ve never played him before in my career,” Tomic said of his impending clash.

“I’ll try to suss as much as I can.

“I wasn’t feeling that great the last few days.

“I was trying to minimise time on court and do the right things,” he said.

“I feel physically pretty well (now).

“I played up and down …I’m very happy I won.”

Our tips:

Bernard Tomic to win ($1.17)

Bernard Tomic to win 3-0 ($2.10)

Bernard Tomic to win the first set ($1.36)

*Odds provided by

Message to Bernard Tomic:

Bernie, you’re 23 now. It’s time to grow up. We’re about to lose Lleyton. We need someone to inspire us to love tennis again. Can you be that man? Let Kyrgios play the fool. You have the talent and skill to be a big star, please use it. If he’s listening – or even if he’s not – Tomic should absolutely maul the Italian in this one. Whatever you think of his off court behaviour, he has all the tools to be a gun on it. Hopefully his maturity is catching up with that skill and we can see him develop into our next big star and carry the hopes of the next generation of Australian tennis fans. He should rip through this one and be cherry ripe for the third round. A quarter final appearance beckons. If he makes it that far, who knows what can happen.

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