• Tomic holds off Brands at Australian Open

    1/17/13 5:52 PM | Ricky Dimon
    Tomic holds off Brands at Australian Open Bernard Tomic converts his eighth match point to defeat Daniel Brands in four sets on Thursday in Melbourne. Tomic advances to a third-round showdown against Roger Federer.

    Bernard Tomic made his way back to the Australian Open third round thanks to a 6-7(4), 7-5, 7-6(3), 7-6(8) win over Daniel Brands on Thursday afternoon. Tomic blasted 26 aces and saved the only break point he faced to prevail in two hours and 55 minutes.

    Both men came out serving well and firing winners from just about everywhere. Brands, who qualified for the main draw to continue his stellar form of late, burst out of the gates especially hot. The 6'5'' German dropped only one service point in the entire first set and eventually cruised through the ensuing tiebreaker seven points to four.

    Tomic battled back in the second and third, although not without a huge struggle. The 20-year-old Australian earned the lone break of the entire match at 5-5 in set two with a running forehand pass. He went on to take the third in another tiebreaker, winning the last four points of it to swiftly erase a 3-3 tie.

    Brands stayed strong despite the disappointment and continued to dominate on serve. Starting at 4-5, however, the world No. 120 suddenly started to lose service points. He saved one match point in the 10th game with an ace then fought off two more at 5-6. That set the stage for a dramatic tiebreaker.

    Tomic trailed by an early mini-break only to seize a 6-3 lead and earn three more match points. Brands ultimately survived seven in total--three before the tiebreaker and four more in the 'breaker at 3-6, 4-6, 5-6, and 6-7. Tomic saved a Brands' set point at 7-8 before finally getting the job done at 9-8.

    "Unexpected, he played really well," Tomic said of Brands. "I was surprised the way he played today. He was serving really good. I didn't think he could serve like this. Served amazing. I couldn't read it at all. I'm happy I won in the end because he had opportunities to win. Very pleased with myself. "

    Brands finished with 23 aces while recording 73 winners and 41 unforced errors. Tomic wrapped up his effort with 59 winners and 34 errors. Next up for the world No. 43 is second-ranked Roger Federer

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Current ATP-rankings

1. Djokovic 12 500 pts
2. Murray 8 750 pts
3. Federer 8 670 pts
4. Ferrer 6 970 pts
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