Australian Open 2021 - Aslan Karatsev, ranked 114, into semis after beating injured Grigor Dimitrov
World number 114 Aslan Karatsev is into the semi-finals of the Australian Open. The 2021 Australian Open is live on Eurosport. Watch every match live and ad-free on the Eurosport app and eurosport.co.uk. You can download the Eurosport app for iOS and Android now. The opening Grand Slam of the season in Melbourne runs from February 8 until February 21.
The Russian, who also knocked out Diego Schwartzman and Felix Auger Aliassime en route to the quarters on his Grand Slam debut, will play either Novak Djokovic or Alex Zverev in the semi-finals.
Karatsev becomes the fifth player in history to qualify for a Grand Slam and reach a semi-final.
Highlights: Karatsev's dream run continues with Dimitrov win
Karatsev was making numerous unforced errors in the first set and the Bulgarian 18th seed took complete control.
But at 1-0 down in the second, a 12-minute game when Karatsev saved five Dimitrov break points proved pivotal as the Russian got into a rhythm and started firing off his forehand. He broke the Dimitrov serve twice which proved enough to level the tie.
Dimitrov's back injury then developed. He was faltering on his serve and was left wandering around the Rod Laver Arena court listlessly in the 30 degree Celsius heat.
'Phenomenal tennis' - Dimitrov with 'exquisite' drop shot winner
KARATSEV: AN UNBELIEVABLE FEELING
"It’s an unbelievable feeling,” Karatsev said post-match.
"It’s the first time playing the men’s draw and the first time the semis.
"It was a really tough one in the beginning for me. I held my nerves. It was still tricky and then in the second set I tried to find a way to play and then the third I felt better. The heat was too much. I just try to play every match.”
'It's an unbelievable feeling' - Karatsev on reaching semi-finals