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Australian Open 2023 Semi Final Recap

Tsitsipas makes maiden Melbourne final, Djokovic Cruises into his 10th.

The 2023 Australian Open is drawing to a close, and Novak Djokovic will face off against Stefanos Tstisipas in Sunday’s final.

Both men had relatively comfortable semi-final victories, with Tstisipas overcoming a third-set blip to come through 7-6(2), 6-4, 6-7(6), 6-3.

While Djokovic kept his composure after blowing a 5-1 lead in the first set to progress 7-5, 6-1, 6-2.

Australian Open 2023 Semi-Final Results

Winner Loser Scoreline
Novak Djokovic Tommy Paul 7-5, 6-1, 6-2
Stefanos Tsitsipas Karen Khachanov 7-6(2), 6-4, 6-7(6), 6-3

Tsitsipas Grits Out Another Victory

tstisipas ao semi final 2023

Stefanos Tsitsipas made his first Australian Open final with a 6-4, 6-7(6), 6-3 victory over Karen Khachanov in three hours and twenty-one minutes.

The Greek has shown considerable resolve during the last fortnight to find his way through matches, and he did the same on Friday, showing determination to win through in four sets after the match looked likely to be a straight-set win.

Tsitsipas served for the match at 5-4 in the third set and had two match points in the tiebreak, but Khachanov hit back to force a fourth set.

Tstistipas didn’t let that affect him, though, as he buckled down and maintained his game plan to take it 6-3.

As I have mentioned in previous recaps, I’ve liked the way Tsitsipas has played in Australia, using the serve plus one to bag cheap points, and he is playing with repeatable patterns.

He’s also a decent mover and can hustle from the baseline when he needs to; alongside Djokovic, he has been the best player in the tournament.

I thought about how hard I’ve worked to get into this position, and it takes a little bit more. I wasn’t able to deliver that in the third set; I was extremely close to getting it. It’s one of these moments that if you stick around, if you dedicate yourself even more and if you concentrate on these important moments even more, it pays off quite well. And always having that ambience in the background somewhere feels so good when I’m able to hit the ball and get such a reward back from the fans.

I thought about how hard I’ve worked to get into this position, and it takes a little bit more. I wasn’t able to deliver that in the third set; I was extremely close to getting it. It’s one of these moments that if you stick around, if you dedicate yourself even more and if you concentrate on these important moments even more, it pays off quite well. And always having that ambience in the background somewhere feels so good when I’m able to hit the ball and get such a reward back from the fans.

These are the moments I’ve been working hard for. To be able to play finals like this, but finals that have bigger meaning that just a final. It’s a Grand Slam final, I’m fighting for the No. 1 spot. It’s a childhood dream to be capturing the No. 1 spot one day. I’m close. I’m happy that this opportunity comes here in Australia and not somewhere else, because this is a place of significance
Tsitsipas on his semi final victory

Match Stats

  Karen Khachanov Stefanos Tsitsipas
Aces 10 18
Double Faults 1 5
1st serve in 68% (94/139) 64% (82/129)
Win 1st serve 66% (62/94) 84% (69/82)
Win 2nd serve 58% (26/45) 53% (25/47)
Fastest serve (km/h) 203 km/h 207 km/h
1st Serve Average (km/h) 188 km/h 191 km/h
2nd serve average (km/h) 153 km/h 161 km/h
Winners 46 66
Return winners 1 3
Unforced errors 32 34
Return unforced errors 5 4
Break points won 75% (3/4) 42% (5/12)
Net points won 62% (23/37) 71% (29/41)
Receiving points won 23% (30/129) 36% (50/139)
Total points won 123 145


On Court Interview

Djokovic Passes Paul

djokovic ao sf 2023

Novak Djokovic made easy enough progress into his tenth Melbourne final with a 7-5, 6-1, 6-2 over Tommy Paul.

Djokovic, who was again playing amid an unjustified media witch hunt, didn’t quite hit the heights of two previous performances. However, he was still a class above the American, playing his first Grand Slam semi-final.

Djokovic made a rapid start to the first set, moving into a 5-1 lead, but Paul hit back, winning four straight games to level.

That required a reset from Novak, and he regained his composure to break again to take the set 7-5. From there, he maintained the momentum to roll through the second and third sets without too many issues.

Of course it adds extra significance. Winning Grand Slams and being the No. 1 in the world are probably the two biggest peaks that you can climb as a professional tennis player. Let’s see what happens. I was really fortunate to hold my nerve toward the end of the first set. It was a key. After that I started swinging through the ball more, so I’m just really pleased to get through to another final. It means everything, especially at this stage of my career. I need that engine, I need that energy and I’m really thankful that I still have enough gas in my legs to be able to play in this level on one of the biggest tennis courts in the world. Djokovic on the potential of recapturing World Number One

Match Stats

  Novak Djokovic Tommy Paul
Aces 12 4
Double Faults 5 0
1st serve in 58% (53/91) 58% (45/77)
Win 1st serve 75% (40/53) 53% (24/45)
Win 2nd serve 55% (21/38) 44% (14/42)
Fastest serve (km/h) 203 km/h 217 km/h
1st Serve Average (km/h) 189 km/h 180 km/h
2nd serve average (km/h) 158 km/h 149 km/h
Winners 31 18
Return winners 4 0
Unforced errors 39 32
Return unforced errors 5 2
Break points won 64% (7/11) 22% (2/9)
Net points won 80% (12/15) 57% (8/14)
Receiving points won 51% (39/77) 27% (25/91)
Total points won 100 68


On Court Interview

Final Predictions

djokvovic tsitsipas

Sunday’s final will be the thirteenth meeting between the pair, with Djokovic holding a 10-2 advantage in the H2H, and he’s won their last nine encounters.

Djokovic is playing for a historic 10th title which would equal Nadal’s twenty-two Grand Slam record, and the mainstream media are desperately trying to derail it.

Over his two weeks in Melbourne, Djokovic has been accused of faking injuries, cheating with toilet breaks, and now his father is supposedly a Russophile who should be banned from the tournament. It is literally 🤡🌍 out there.

Despite all that, Djokovic’s ball striking on this court has been impeccable, and his ability to block out the noise created by the dishonest media who hound him is remarkable.

I think it will be a slog for both guys, and I reckon Stefanos will make it close as he’s shown good resolve in all his matches so far, but I expect Novak to come out on top.

What are your predictions for the final? Let me know in the comments.


Editor of Perfect Tennis and a big fan of Roger Federer, I've spent countless hours watching and analysing his matches. Alongside playing the sport, I also enjoy writing about the tour, rackets, strings, and the technicalities of the game. Whether it's breaking down the latest tournament results or discussing the latest gear innovations, I'm always eager to share my insights with fellow tennis enthusiasts.

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  1. Thanks again Jonathan, for recap. Nice to read again some about the matches.
    Judged from highlights Tsitsipas played well and intelligent, maybe to make an interesting match vers. Djoko. The highlights Djoko vs TP were not enough for me to get any impression.

    1. Djoko was not at his peak, but still far too good. Paul has good game, but how can he fancy his chances of beating Djoker from the baseline by rallying, he got smoked there.

  2. Tsitsipas has been quite vocal these past 2 weeks, I still don’t see him able to top Djoker this Sunday. I hope he proves me wrong.

  3. I think you’ve left a set out of the Tsitsi/KK match, Jonathan?

    I wonder if Tsitsipas has learned enough from the French Open final actually to beat Djokovic this time around. I have a feeling he hasn’t, and that it’ll be No. 10 for Novak. 5 sets again, maybe. Would be nice to have a competitive match, at least – they seem to have been pretty rare beasts this tournament.

    1. Ohhhhhh, THANKS, Sue! WHAT a treat! Such precision, such unbelievable style, even in galloping to reach, and still without a chance for the opponent to get it…

      1. I have seen this compilation multiple times, but still good to watch. A bit ridiculous to see Federer ruling from the baseline, while everyone associates him with an aggressive net play.
        With all the differences we can see currently, how similar Djoker’s game is. Using every spot on the court, hitting always the most difficult for the opponent, so difficulties are accumulating until no chance to reach the ball. That’s exactly how Djoker dismantles opponents today. Actually the very same gameplan and ability to execute it (the biggest difference being in the art of executing.
        That’s maybe one of strongest points of all Big3. Even Murray has/had this.
        They call it tennis IQ, right, Jonathan?

      2. Well, I wouldn’t say this footage is Fed ruling from the baseline, it’s a compilation of great shots. One in a million type points. None of the points are the bread and butter that win him matches. Just great to watch.

        But yes I agree, the big three have well-defined strategies to win points that they can repeat. Nadal is probably the most defined, as he must have played the same point so many times over and over again, even in a single match.

        Federer less so as he plays with more flare, but he started with his slice to get players in bad court positions, then picked off with his forehand, but then when conditions slowed it became more of a serve + 1.

        Tennis IQ maybe, I would call it more defined patterns of play. Tennis IQ would be more awareness of angles, shot selection, ball recognition etc. And ye Murray is very good at that, he has very good ball recognition and works the court.

      3. With “ruling from the baseline” I meant just the points from the compilation. If I’m not mistaken, most of them were played from the baseline, ruling by big variety and extreme angles, directions, spins a.s.o. and ability to make the most from the court geometry.
        I have not realized, from which years were the individual points, but this was not times of S&V and SABR.
        For some observers “true” Federer starts with Edberg but Federer was excellent baseliner earlier (compared with so many old-style S&V-players like Sampras). Actually I prefer (watching) pre-Edberg Federer.

      4. Thanks for information from both of you, very interesting. Please keep on!
        As I recall from among other the hair-style – the comp is spread over several years. I think I noticed even one (or two?) sabrs – even commented (But you don’t listen to that, PRF?)

      5. Yeah, I never listen to comments if possible to switch to “Ambient” (only sounds from the play and (unfortunately) the crowd).
        And yes, I didn’t notice the SABR.
        And I guess, I was not regular follower of Fed in 2003.
        Was too busy with arranging my new living place and having 4 tennis trainings plus 2x swimming a week.

  4. Tsitsipas is overrated and overpumped (=he overrates himself).
    Glad Djoker won. Not because of the idiotic all-time records. Because of his Big-Level play.
    With Federer, Nadal and Thiem as well Nadal and Zverev kind of missing, Tsitsipas got his chance but didn’t make great deal of it.
    Look at his H2H vs. Big3.
    Only Thiem can challenge Djoker and Nadal (if he recovers and delivers in Paris), but only assuming Thiem can recover from ranking low before RG. Like it looks now, he will be (over)training most of the year and with his draw luck, maybe often lose early.
    I don’t see a concept in his team to overcome it. For me he should halve his training time and start fresh to every tournament. Good preparation is OK and a part of his nature. Overpreparation makes his top öevel, reached in practice, unusable in matches.
    It’s a pity, because it’s him who should have replaced waning Federer in the Top Mix. Given his level and also his style (1. Federer………… 4. Thiem, 5. Nadal ……. 7. Djoker ………………………………………… 22. Anyone)

    1. Tsitsipas is 5 years younger, and he has more career titles and more slam final appearances than Thiem had when he was the same age. The Greek also has more M1000 titles already.

      So the idea that Tstisipas is overrated, while Thiem is the heir to the big three throne is born from looking at Mr save the planet / buy my NFTs through rose-tinted glasses, not anything objective.

      1. Don’t play with numbers if you don’t know what they mean. Yes, Tsitsipas is younger and has more of anything. But Tsitsipas is not a late maturer (assuming, you know, what it means), so add 3-4 years to his age or deduct 3-4 from Thiem’s age, then compare.
        Also Tsitsipas didn’t have that long injury break, so correct with this difference before you compare.
        I’m comparing with Thiem from time before the injury. I don’t know, what’s Thiem’s future. Maybe none.
        Tsitsipas overrated has nothing to do with Thiem underrated or something.
        “Mr save planet/buy my NFT) is just a joke in pure Anglo-Saxon style, so nobody should feel offended 🙂

    2. Tsitsipas seemed more humble and sympathetic when we heard about him first. Then some time after, he went somewhat opposite, growing immature. Hopefully he may start the other way round soon again, next half of his twenties? As it is, it is not likable to cheer on him…we’ll see. In the meantime I hope for some others to rehab and/or improve….Thiem for sure, and some young ones. If you don’t like the players then why watch them? Same with most musicians. A few of them you listen to whatever, because even if their heart doesn’t seem to dominate their behavior, it comes out moving us all in their performance. That’s art. With Roger, I experienced some of same, and I would never have dreamt that sports might have that ability too. If not soon again, I’ll lose my interest. Just now my tennis-engagement is not on a high level for sure

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