Tonight was my Quarter final match up vs number 3 seed Kieran Booth.
It was a really warm day today in Melbourne with the temperature around 25 degrees. The match was at 6.30pm and I had all day to get prepared for the match keeping hydrated and fueled for the match.
I took a wet towel to cool my face and neck as well as a dry towel onto court. I was far less nervous than I was on Monday night for my 1st round match and struck the ball well in the knock up. We got stuck into the 1st set and it could of gone either way with Kieran taking it 6/3.
I raced away playing probably my best tennis of the match to lead 4/1 in the 2nd set before Kieran rallied back and I just couldn't get a constant length or width on my shots. I especially struggled to hit a good main-wall Dedan and Cut Volley return of serve which added more pressure on other shots and made too many unnecessary unforced errors. I found myself 4/5 down and facing the prospect of going 2 sets to love down in a match I was desperate to win. But was able to grit my teeth and win some clutch points to sneak the 2nd set 6/5.
It was again nip and tuck in the 3rd set but I lost a little momentum and a drop in concentration mid set and I couldn't stop the rot and Kieran took the 3rd 2/6 and I again trailed in sets going down 1-2.
I was really struggling now with a seriously tight right hamstring after tweaking my lower back on Monday night and I found myself 2/5 down in the 4th. It was up to me to grit my teeth again and got back to 4/5 and was so close to taking it to 5/5 but wasn't able to and Kieran took the match 4/6 in the 4th set and my 4th loss in a row to Kieran which is a little hard to swallow, not only are we mates who compete against each other but a semi final was up for grabs for the winner and would of taken me tantalisingly close to the 100 points required for my official world ranking.
Unfortunately it wasn't to be and it has been a disappointing singles event without playing anywhere near my best after having two great results back in the UK before heading over to Melbourne. But the sun will always come up tomorrow and with that the Doubles event starts for young John Lumley and I against Ballarat Head Pro Brett McFarlane and Prested Hall Assistant Lewis Williams tomorrow Friday 10th at 12pm local time.