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Last Updated: Wednesday, 5 July 2006, 19:21 GMT 20:21 UK
Inspired Baghdatis shocks Hewitt
By Caroline Cheese
BBC Sport at Wimbledon

Marcos Baghdatis
Baghdatis had never won a match at Wimbledon before this year
Cyprus' Marcos Baghdatis caused a huge surprise by sweeping past former champion Lleyton Hewitt to reach the Wimbledon semi-finals.

The 18th seed will play Rafael Nadal or Jarkko Nieminen after triumphing 6-1 5-7 7-6 (7-5) 6-2.

Hewitt was out of sorts throughout, but his battling spirit saw him come back from 3-0 down to take the second set.

But the turning point of an absorbing match came when Baghdatis held his nerve in a gripping third-set tiebreak.

"It feels great," Australian Open finalist Baghdatis told BBC Sport.

"I'm playing really good. I got a bit tight after winning the first set and going 3-0 up in the second, but I got through it.

"It's amazing for me. Everything has happened so fast for me. It's just unbelievable emotions and I hope I can keep it going."

It just didn't happen for me today

Lleyton Hewitt

Baghdatis now has a day off on Thursday, when Nadal and Nieminen will play their delayed quarter-final.

The former junior world number one needed just 26 minutes to take the first set, overpowering Hewitt from the baseline.

And Hewitt quickly found himself in deep trouble in the second set when a rampant Baghdatis broke a second time for a 3-0 lead.

However, the Australian drew on his deep reserves of fighting spirit and found a way back into the match.

Hewitt attacked the net with increasing success and when he levelled the match, he turned to his support camp and pumped his fist repeatedly.

After squandering an early break in the third set, Baghdatis might have been considered the underdog in the resulting tiebreak - but not a bit of it.

The 21-year-old, playing in only his second Wimbledon, played the more solid tennis and a stunning return won him the set.

And there was no recovery from Hewitt, regarded as one of the best fighters in the game.

Baghdatis, who had not won a match at Wimbledon before this year, broke twice more in the fourth set to seal victory in just over two and a half hours.

Hewitt said: "It didn't happen out there. I struggled to get into the match and then I didn't play great when I did get back in.

"I was just finding a way to hang in there and I didn't take my chances.

"He played extremely well at the start and he wasn't giving me any cheap points. I didn't quite take it to him when I needed to."

John McEnroe on Wimbledon
05 Jul 06 |  Tennis
Gamewatch: Hewitt v Baghdatis
05 Jul 06 |  Tennis


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