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De Minaur to face Djokovic in Wimbledon quarter-finals

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Australia’s Alex de Minaur has made the quarter-finals at Wimbledon for the first time in his career, defeating Frenchman Arthur Fils in four sets on Monday night (AEST).

The win, which took just under three hours on the No.1 Court in London, means de Minaur will face 24-time Grand Slam champion Novak Djokovic in the quarter-finals next.

It also marks the second consecutive Grand Slam quarter-final for de Minaur. The Aussie made the last eight at the French Open in Paris last month, having cracked the world’s top 10 for the first time this year.

His odds to win Wimbledon have now shortened to $17 with online bookmakers, having been at $29 pre-tournament.

De Minaur returns brilliantly to sink Fils

While grass-court tennis is typically dominated by the server, de Minaur is carving out a niche for himself as a brilliant returner on the surface.

Against Fils, ranked No.34 in the world, de Minaur won just short of half the points played on the 20-year-old’s serve.

He conjured up nine breaks in total over the 6-2, 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 victory, making only 41 unforced errors compared to his opponent’s 66.

“This has always been a tournament I’ve wanted to do well in,” the Australian said after the match.

“I’m very happy to be in the quarterfinals of Wimbledon.”

De Minaur did appear to injure himself while sliding for a forehand on match point. It’s unknown whether the injury is serious or not.

“Felt like I jarred it a little bit. Kind of was a little bit ginger,” he said.

“Again, it’s probably a little bit of a scare more than anything.

“It was kind of hip area. I’m feeling pretty decent.”

Djokovic waits in quarter-finals

Lying in wait for de Minaur in the quarter-finals is seven-time Wimbledon champion Djokovic, who defeated No.15 seed Holger Rune in straight sets.

Djokovic also appeared to have a physical issue during his match, holding his abdominals after several shots.

However, the biggest drama of the round-of-16 clash came when the Serbian took exception to some members of the crowd cheering in a disrespectful manner.

“They were [disrespecting me]. They were. I don’t accept it. No, no, no,” he said in a heated on-court interview.

“I know they were cheering for Rune, but that’s an excuse to also boo.

“Listen, I’ve been on the tour for more than 20 years. So, trust me, I know all the tricks, I know how it works. It’s fine, it’s fine, it’s okay.

“I’ve played in much more hostile environments, trust me. You guys can’t touch me.”

The crowd interaction undoubtedly spurred Djokovic on to his best performance of the tournament so far.

De Minaur, who is a $3.40 underdog at tennis bookmakers in their quarter-final, will be hoping the audience behave themselves on Wednesday.

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