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By Chris Oddo | Tuesday January 23, 2018

Andy Murray’s absence from this year’s Australian Open left a big void for British tennis. Kyle Edmund’s remarkable run to his first career Grand Slam semifinal has—at least temporarily—filled it.

The 23-year-old World No. 49 edged Grigor Dimitrov in four tight sets, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4, to book a spot in his first major semifinal.

Edmund entered the match with an 0-14 record against the Top 10 including two losses against Dimitrov, but he has risen to every challenge he has faced in Melbourne. He defeated No.11-seeded Kevin Anderson in the first round, battling back from two sets to one down. In the third round he battled from two sets to one down again, against Nikoloz Basilashvili.

On Tuesday Edmund used his massive forehand to great effect and crushed 46 winners against the No.3 seed.

Still the match very much hung in the balance until after the midway point of the third set with the match deadlocked at one set a piece and on serve. It was a Dimitrov double-fault on break point that would be his undoing in the eighth game of the third set. With a 5-3 lead, Edmund served out the set in the next game, closing the set on a backhand error from Dimitrov.

The pair traded breaks early in the third set and it was Edmund who capitalized on some more shaky play from Dimitrov to break for 5-4 when a Dimitrov backhand caught the net.

Edmund battled back from 15-30 down to clinch the victory in two hours and 49 minutes.

With the win, Edmund becomes just the sixth British male to reach the semifinals of the major. He’ll face either Rafael Nadal or Marin Cilic next.


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