Australian Open: Djokovic, Gauff advance in upset-filled Day 4

Coco Gauff celebrates a win over fellow American Caroline Dolehide on Wednesday at the 2024 Australian Open in Melbourne. Photo by Lukas Coch/EPA-EFE
1 of 6 | Coco Gauff celebrates a win over fellow American Caroline Dolehide on Wednesday at the 2024 Australian Open in Melbourne. Photo by Lukas Coch/EPA-EFE

Jan. 17 (UPI) -- Novak Djokovic and Coco Gauff were among the top players to advance Wednesday at the 2024 Australian Open. Ons Jabeur, Maria Sakkari and Frances Tiafoe were the top players who were upset on Day 4 of the Grand Slam in Melbourne.

Djokovic split the first two sets of his second-round match before racing back for a 6-3, 4-6, 7-6(4), 6-3 victory over Australian Alexei Popyrin at Melbourne Park.


The top-seeded Serbian totaled 11 aces, 31 winners and 32 unforced errors and converted 3 of 11 break points. Popyrin logged 17 aces and 52 winners and converted 2 of 7 break point opportunities, but totaled 58 unforced errors.

"I haven't been playing or feeling my best the last week or so," Djokovic told reporters. "It's frustrating at times, with the level of tennis I'm playing on the court and some uncharacteristic mistakes that I've made. But, at the same time, you can't always feel your best or play your best.


"You have to find a way to win, which I did."

Djokovic will face No. 30 Tomas Martin Etcheverry of Argentina in the third round. Etcheverry beat Gael Monfils of France in straight sets in his second-round match.

The winner of the Djokvoic-Etcheverry match will meet No. 16 Ben Shelton of the United States or No. 20 Adrian Mannarino of France in the fourth round.

Shelton beat Australian Christopher O'Connell in the second round. Mannarino ousted Spaniard Jaume Munar.

Like Djokovic, No. 7 Stefans Tsitsipas of Greece also rallied early for a comeback victory on Day 4. He beat Australian Jordan Thompson 4-6, 7-6(6), 6-2, 7-6(4).

No. 4 Jannik Sinner of Italy, No. 5 Andrey Rublev of Russia, No. 10 Alex de Minaur of Australia and No. 12 Taylor Fritz of the United States were among the other top men to advance.

No. 17 Tiafoe of the United States exited early, losing in straight sets to Tomas Machac of the Czech Republic.

On the women's side, No. 4 Gauff sprinted past fellow American Caroline Dolehide 7-6(2), 6-2. No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus, No. 9 Barbora Krejcikova of the Czech Republic and No. 10 Beatriz Haddad Maia of Brazil were the other top women's players to advance.


Mirra Andreeva, a 16-year-old Russian, pulled off the most major early upset of the tournament. She beat No. 6 Jabuer of Tunisia in straight sets at Rod Laver Arena. Jabeur was the second Top 10 player eliminated from the men's or women's singles circuits.

Later Wednesday, No. 8 Sakkari became the third such player.

She lost in straight sets to Elina Avanesyan of Russia. No. 7 Marketa Vondrousova of the Czech Republic was the first Top 10 player to lose this year in Melbourne. She exited in the first round of the Grand Slam.

No. 1 Iga Swiatek of Poland, No. 3 Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan and No. 5 Jessica Pegula of the United States are among the top women's players who will be in action on Day 5 in Melbourne.

No. 2 Carlos Alcaraz of Spain, No. 3 Daniil Medvedev of Russia, No. 6 Alexander Zverev of Germany, No. 8 Holger Rune of Denmark and No. 9 Hubert Hurkacz of Poland will be among the top men competing on Day 5.

Second-round Australian Open coverage will continue at 7 p.m. EST Wednesday on ESPN+ and 9 p.m. on ESPN2.

Novak Djokovic's journey through the 2023 U.S. Open

Novak Djokovic of Serbia returns the ball to Alexandre Muller of France in the first round of the 2023 U.S. Open Tennis Championships at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Forest Hills, N.Y., on August 28, 2023. Djokovic won with a score of 6-0, 6-2, 6-3. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

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