Alex de Minaur and John Millman are close friends. Millman even stayed with De Minaur in Spain to train in the lead-up to Roland Garros. But on Wednesday, only one of the Aussies was able to advance at the cinch Championships.
De Minaur beat Millman 6-1, 6-3 to reach the quarter-finals and took a 3-0 lead in their ATP Head2Head series.
“I’m very close to Johnny, so I want him to do as well as possible and would have loved for him to be on the other side of the draw and go deep,” De Minaur said. “In a way, it also brings a certain level of respect towards the match and in some ways it actually helps me. I can kind of tell myself to be more focused and try to worry about my side of the court more. I think I handled that very well today and [I am] very happy with my performance.”
De Minaur has never lost more than four games in a set against Millman. The fourth seed broke the 32-year-old’s serve five times to set a clash against Marin Cilic or Fabio Fognini. He is into his second consecutive grass-court quarter-final after making the last eight in Stuttgart last week.
“It’s a surface that I feel like I adapt pretty quickly to,” De Minaur said. “I’ve gotten two good wins here, so it’s a work in progress, I’m getting better every week and I’m just enjoying this part of the season.”
“A huge win for me and definitely a big step up from my first round on Monday,” Norrie said in his on-court interview. “All credit to him, he’s having a great year. He’s won a lot this year, so it’s a huge win for me and another match on the grass. It’s all invaluable stuff.”
Norrie, like Karatsev, has had the best season of his career. This was his personal-best 27th win of the year and he is into his first grass-court tour-level quarter-final since Eastbourne in 2018. The 25-year-old will next play Alexander Bublik or countryman Jack Draper.