Milos Raonic Bets It All Against The Most Dangerous Tennis Player

Canada’s tennis hopes at the Australian Open rest on the shoulders of Toronto’s Milos Raonic.  The Canadian is in the quarterfinals of the first Grand Slam of the season, set to face one of his toughest opponents on the ATP World Tour – Novak Djokovic.

The two men faced each other in four previous matches, including three times over the course of last season.  To date, Raonic has yet to best the world’s number one player.  However, with the exception of the Paris Masters last November, Raonic has held his own against Djokovic, forcing the champion to play extra games at both Roland Garros and Wimbledon.

Unfortunately for Raonic, the odds are once again on Djokovic’s side.  The top Serb has yet to lose a set in the Grand Slam tournament, while the Canadian was forced to play two extra sets in the fourth round against Feliciano Lopez.  In that match, Raonic surrendered the second set, though took command of the fifth frame with a 6-3 final score to advance to the quarterfinals.

Despite being considered the technical favourite to win, Djokovic says fans should still bet on Raonic, especially the younger player’s serve.

“He's been playing some great tennis in the last 15 months.  He deserves to be where he is now, top 10, coming closer to the top five in the world.”

Djokovic once complimented Raonic as possessing “one of the best serves in the world.” The Canadian’s powerful arm was certainly an asset on his run to the quarterfinals in Australia, successfully serving 99 aces in the first four rounds of the Grand Slam.

However, if there is one of the major tennis tournaments where Djokovic plays at his best, it’s in Australia.  He’s won four Grand Slams down under over his career, including three consecutive wins from 2011 to 2013.  Stan Wawrinka won the first major of his career at last year’s Australian Open, breaking Djokovic’s undefeated streak at three majors.

Raonic is still evolving as a player, and has already become one of Canada’s most successful tennis professionals.  He once managed to upset Roger Federer, the world’s second best ranked player in the world, and holds a realistic shot of tipping the scales against Djokovic.

The match will be played tomorrow, followed by the final quarterfinal bout between Wawrinka, attempting to defend his title, and Kei Nishikori, runner up at the 2014 US Open.  The winners of the two matches play each other in the semis before facing the winner of Andy Murray and Tomas Berdych in the championship.