Kyrgios, Kokkinakis into all-Aussie final
Oliver Caffrey |
Nick Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis are Australian Open finalists after the enigmatic box office act powered into an all-local doubles decider.
The Special K semi-final was scheduled for Rod Laver Arena after their giant-killing run on outside courts and the Australian duo did not disappoint on centre stage.
Kyrgios and Kokkinakis outlasted third seeds Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos 7-6 (7-4) 6-4 in an hour and 47 minutes on Thursday.
Showing more focus and restraint than in previous matches on the raucous outside courts, the pair mostly let their irresistible tennis do the talking.
But it would not be a Kyrgios match with at least one blow-up.
The 26-year-old was furious late in the second set after facing two break points against his serve.
Kyrgios let out some expletives at himself, argued with the umpire about the net cord sensor and pleaded for the crowd to stop talking during serves, before smashing a racquet when he dropped the game.
But the pair were able to close out the match by breaking back, with Kokkinakis hitting the winning shot with a classy lob.
Rod Laver, who only turns up for big matches on the court that is named after him, watched on, as did legendary Australia cricket captain Steve Waugh.
The victory sets up an all-Australian final at the Australian Open for the first time since 1980 with Matthew Ebden and Max Purcell taking down second seeds Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury 6-3 7-6 (11-9) in their semi-final.AAP