She’s not done yet.

Caroline Wozniacki, set to retire at the end of this tournament, refused to go quietly into the night (or afternoon, as the case may be) on Wednesday.

Up against a quality foe employing some, shall we say… less quality tactics in Dayana Yastremska, Wozniacki managed to dig herself out of a double-break hole in both sets en route to a 7-5, 7-5 victory.

Certainly no one would’ve blamed her had she not managed to extract herself – the tributes would’ve still flowed regardless – but as it happened, the Dane couldn’t help but engineer a fightback, and that says more about her as a player than any video montage ever could.

Here’s your three to see on Thursday at the Aussie Open:

Belinda Bencic (SUI) [6] v Jelena Ostapenko (LAT) – First on Margaret Court Arena

Two 22-year-olds whom, for better and for worse have seen their careers go in very different directions, it all comes together when Belinda Bencic takes on Jelena Ostapenko. A second career meeting between these two, their first was a three-set affair at Indian Wells ’18 won by Ostapenko – back when she was the biggest young star in women’s tennis – and while fortunes have reversed considerably since then, her form towards the end of last season hinted she could be on her way back to her free-swinging best. Hopefully the resurgence continues here, and if so Bencic will have her hands full trying to weather the storm and create angles off the Latvian’s pace, which should make for a very fun encounter.

Cici Bellis (USA) v Karolina Muchova (CZE) [20] – First on 1573 Arena

It’s been a rough couple of years for Cici Bellis. Once the hottest prospect in American tennis, a series of injuries to her wrist and elbow mean this is her first grand slam appearance since the 2018 Aussie Open for the 20-year-old. Fortunately, she’s not only back but looking something like her “old” self, promising to be a tough test for the 20th seed Karolina Muchova. A player with plenty of potential herself, Muchova is not one to dither about at the baseline and will look to overwhelm Bellis with her superior firepower, but the latter is at her best when given pace to redirect, and that should make this one a very eye-catching affair, with the added bonus that whoever wins, you could be looking at the breakout star of the tournament.

Nick Kyrgios (AUS) [23] v Gilles Simon (FRA) – Fourth on Melbourne Arena (not before 6:45pm local)

Both on court and off, it’s been a remarkable few weeks for Nick Kyrgios, but now he faces a major hurdle in the form of cagey vet Gilles Simon. A 6-4, 7-6 victor in their only career meeting in Washington last year, there’s no doubting Kyrgios has the firepower to get the job done, but the question remains whether he can keep it together for a full-five setter, especially when he’s playing a counterpuncher like Simon who knows how to push all the right buttons. In years past, this would’ve been the exact sort of match that would trip him up at a major, and if only for sake of John McEnroe’s wallet, it will be interesting to see if this year is any different.



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