US Open champion Stan Wawrinka survived a tough test against young Brit Kyle Edmund, coming from a set down, 6-7(2), 6-4, 6-4, to secure his place in the semifinals of the Brisbane International. Wawrinka will face either Kei Nishikori or Jordan Thompson for a place in the final.
Edmund pushed Wawrinka to deuce in the majority of his service games in the first set, and although being broken while serving for the set, managed to bounce back in the tiebreak to take the opener with some dominant play. Wawrinka managed to find a better rhythm on serve in the second set, not allowing Edmund a look at any break points on his way to taking the second set with one break. Edmund fought hard to try and regain control in the second set, managing to scrape back one of two breaks but Wawrinka served out the match at the second time of asking to book a spot in the semifinals.
Wawrinka got off to a good start, flying through an impressive love hold to quickly go into the lead. The Swiss kept his point streak going into the return, pushing Edmund wide with powerful forehands and finishing him off with a signature scorching backhand down the line. The Brit recovered to take the next four points and secure the early hold of serve. The Edmund forehand started to work it's magic in the next game, opening with a venomous forehand crosscourt winner to go into the lead on the Wawrinka serve. A forehand into the net from the US Open champion left the Brit with opportunities at 0-30. More excellent forehands left Edmund with two break points but Wawrinka managed to save both and hold to move 2-1 ahead.
The Brit came through a love hold to put the pressure back on the Wawrinka serve. The Swiss absorbed the power of Edmund, coming away with the hold in another tight service game. Edmund's forehand helped him through another easy hold as Wawrinka was still looking to find his rhythm on the return. Edmund used his backhand well to draw Wawrinka out wide and open the court, allowing him to flatten out the forehand down the line. Some excellent net play and good serving under pressure took the Swiss through another tricky game, saving a break point to edge ahead at 4-3
Wawrinka was still unable to pressure Edmund on the return, the Brit easily dictated his way to another easy hold. A nightmare start to the next game from Wawrinka handed the Brit another three break points. Great serving and a string of excellent forehands saved all three and took the pair to deuce. Edmund kept fighting for the break and on his fifth break point of the game, took the break that would allow him to serve for the set.
Wawrinka finally found a way through on return, finding his range on his groundstrokes better to trouble Edmund. The Swiss took his first break point of the match with a punishing backhand down the line to level the pair at 5-5. The Swiss got back on track with a much-needed good hold, surviving a scorching forehand return winner from Edmund to go into the lead at 6-5. Edmund survived more aggressive play from Wawrinka to send the pair into a tiebreak.
The Brit continued his high level into the tiebreak, taking an early mini-break and holding on to both of his service points with two outstanding passing shot winners while Wawrinka piled on the pressure. Another two mini-breaks followed for Edmund as he raced to a 5-0 lead. Wawrinka took one mini-break back with a backhand down the line but a great volley from the Brit left the Swiss facing five set points. Edmund missed the first on the Wawrinka serve but took the second with an error from Wawrinka.
Comeback from Wawrinka
An easy hold for each player got the second set underway. Edmund survived a test on serve to go 2-1 ahead before taking a medical timeout to get his finger taped up. Wawrinka continued cruising on serve to quickly tie the pair up, not allowing Edmund as many chances as he seen in the first set.
Wawrinka pounced on return in the next game, taking the second break point of the game and quickly consolidating the lead with another strong hold to go 4-2 ahead. Edmund stayed in touch with a much better hold, serving well to stay a game away from the US Open champion.
The Brit managed to push Wawrinka to deuce as he fought to get the break back, but the Swiss stayed focused and came out with the hold, yet to face a break point in the set. Edmund held again in an impressive service game, but there was no chance of getting back into the set as Wawrinka raced through a love hold, sealing the set with a perfect drop shot to level the match.
Wawrinka kept his momentum going into the start of the deciding set, breaking in the opening game after a nine-minute battle to take an early lead. The Swiss then quickly consolidated his lead with a love hold, which Edmund followed with a love hold of his own to get back on track.
The lead was in danger for Wawrinka as Edmund battled from 15-40 down to break point. A stunning backhand from the Swiss took the pair back to deuce on his way to taking a 3-1 lead. After another impressive love hold, Edmund found himself with break back points again. Wawrinka managed to save two more to secure a 4-2 lead.
Edmund's luck was running out as Wawrinka's defense earned him another break that would allow him to serve for the match. The second break was quickly recovered with a couple of incredible passing shots from Edmund keeping hope alive. The Brit followed up with a solid hold, asking the serve it out question of Wawrinka once more.
Edmund took the lead on the return with a perfect defensive lob, much to Wawrinka's frustration. The Swiss recovered to take the next four points, sealing the third set 6-4 with a great volley to book his place in the semifinals.