John Millman would like Australian Open organisers not to stick with Dunlop.
John Millman would like Australian Open organisers not to stick with Dunlop.Source: Getty Images

New balls please.

John Millman has joined Bernard Tomic in criticising the Dunlop tennis balls to be used at the Australian Open after Tennis Australia had them take over as ball supplier from Wilson this summer on a five-year deal.

“(It was) really tough to generate (pace) with it cold out there, the balls are pretty dead,” said Millman after his tight Sydney International quarter-final loss to Gilles Simon which finished well after 1am on Friday following a wet night.

Murray's career over?

Murray’s career over?

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“The balls are really s**t when it gets like that, I figured out, so I’ve got to factor that in for next week in Melbourne, just remember how bad the balls are in cold conditions like that.

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Andy, I know you take me for a joker most of the time, but at least hear me out on this one old friend. You will always be someone that impacted the sport in so many different ways, I know this was never the way you wanted to go out, but hey it was a heck of a ride. You took me under your wing as soon as I got on tour, and to this day you have been someone I literally just look forward to seeing. You are one crazy tennis player, miles better than me, but I just want you to know that today isn’t only a sad day for you and your team, it’s a sad day for the sport and for everyone you’ve had an impact on. Which leaves me big fella.. these are a couple photos, that should make you smile and think, I was actually a little bit of a younger brother to you. Anyways, I just want you to know, and I’m sure you already do, everyone wants you to keep fighting and to keep being you. Goodluck at the Australian Open muzz, I’ll be behind you. #onelastdance 🙌🏽🙏🏽

A post shared by Kygs (@k1ngkyrg1os) on

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“You are one crazy tennis player, miles better than me, but I just want you to know that today isn’t only a sad day for you and your team, it’s a sad day for the sport and for everyone you’ve had an impact on.

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“Which leaves me big fella. These are a couple photos, that should make you smile and think, I was actually a little bit of a younger brother to you.

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“Anyways, I just want you to know, and I’m sure you already do, everyone wants you to keep fighting and to keep being you. Goodluck at the Australian Open Muzz, I’ll be behind you.”

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Juan Martin del Potro withdrew from this year’s Australian Open because of injury, but was left devastated after watching Murray’s emotional press conference.

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“Please don’t stop trying,” del Potro said.

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“I can imagine your pain and sadness. I hope you can overcome this.

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“You deserve to retire on your own terms, whenever that happens.

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“We love you Andy Murray and we want to see you happy and doing well.”

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Andy, just watched your conference. Please don’t stop trying. Keep fighting. I can imagine your pain and sadness. I hope you can overcome this. You deserve to retire on your own terms, whenever that happens. We love you @andy_murray and we want to see you happy and doing well. 🙏

— Juan M. del Potro (@delpotrojuan) January 11, 2019

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“I tip my cap to Andy Murray,” Roddick said.

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“Absolute legend. Short list of best tacticians in history.

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“Unreal results in a brutal era. Nothing but respect here. I hope he can finish strong and healthy.”

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Andy Roddick also suggested Murray could bow out of tennis by partnering up with his brother, Jamie, at Wimbledon.

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“Would be a pretty cool moment to play doubles (with) his bro at Wimby if he can’t play singles,” Roddick said.

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Just thinking out loud here. He deserves his moment to say goodbye at Wimbledon. He’s too important to Great Britain and Wimbledon history to not have it….. Would be a pretty cool moment to play doubles w his bro at Wimby if he can’t play singles https://t.co/m7caeL2shX

— andyroddick (@andyroddick) January 11, 2019

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WHAT YOU CONTROVERSIALLY WON’T SEE AT THIS YEAR’S AUSTRALIAN OPEN

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TENNIS WORLD IN AWE OF ‘BEST SHOT I’VE SEEN’

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DEMON WINS ALL-AUSSIE QUARTERFINAL TO ADVANCE IN SYDNEY

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THE SERENA SITUATION: IS IT THE CHAMPION AGAINST THE REST?

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Darren Cahill — who has coached the likes of Andre Agassi, Lleyton Hewitt and Simona Halep, as well as Murray — was confident Murray would retire a content man.

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“When you search for example of ‘emptied the bucket to be as good as they could be’ there should be a picture of Andy Murray sitting under that quote,” Cahill said.

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“Remarkable discipline for training, competition, sacrifice, perfection, a little crazy, but a legend of a bloke.

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“Bravo Andy.”

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When you search for examples of “emptied the bucket to be as good as they could be” there should be a picture of Andy Murray sitting under that quote. Remarkable discipline for training, competition, sacrifice, perfection, a little crazy 😃 but a legend of a bloke. Bravo Andy 👏

— Darren Cahill (@darren_cahill) January 11, 2019

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A raw and emotional first press conference at this #AusOpen, with Andy Murray accepting his tennis mortality and saying that Wimbledon this year, at the latest, will be his \”end point.\”

— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) January 11, 2019

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While a number of tennis personalities touched on Murray’s personality on and off the court, Andrea Petkovic spoke glowingly of Murray as a champion for women’s tennis.

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“He was always my favorite, and I think it will be a huge loss for tennis in general, but also for the WTA,” the German said.

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“Because even nowadays, when you think everything is equal, you still need men, especially successful men, to speak up for women.”

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Ashleigh Barty has continued her giantkilling run at the Sydney International with a thrilling three-set semi-final win over big-hitting world No.9 Kiki Bertens.

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Barty withstood 15 aces from Bertens and rallied from a set down to beat the Dutchwoman 6-7 (4-7) 6-4 7-5 in a quality two-hour, 18-minute encounter on Friday to advance to her second-successive final in Sydney.

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The Australian No.1 will play Czech fifth seed Petra Kvitova or Serbian qualifier Aliaksandra Sasnovich in Saturday’s final, hoping to complete the perfect lead-up for next week’s Australian Open in Melbourne.

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After taking out 2017 French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko in the first round, Barty has toppled world No.1 Simona Halep, the 12th-ranked Elise Mertens and Bertens to send an ominious warning to her Open rivals.

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TAKE A LOOK AT THE ULTIMATE AUSTRALIAN OPEN GUIDE

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“It’s amazing — it truly has been a phenomenal week of tennis,” Barty said. “I feel like I’ve played great the whole week. I’ve had tough opponents every single round and I’m really excited to have another shot at the title.”

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The world No.15 has shown remarkable mental resolve to back up her career-best win over Halep two days ago.

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“Both Elise and Kiki were amazing opponents so that I knew I had to be switched on and play my best tennis to win.

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“That’s the best part of this tournament. It’s so strong; every single round could be a final.

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“So I have to be ready now and then I get to come out and enjoy tomorrow.”

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Barty said it would be a dream to become the first Australian winner in Sydney since Alicia Molik 14 years ago.

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Molik, who was courtside for Friday’s win, went on to reach the Australian Open quarter-finals a week later.

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“It would be amazing,” the 22-year-old said.

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“Mol — my Fed Cup captain, so I would love to try to be the next Australian. “But I’ll come out here tomorrow to enjoy it.”

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Barty battled back from an early service break down, only to blow a 4-1 lead in the first-set tiebreaker on Ken Rosewall Arena.

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Aided by three-consecutive unforced errors, including a double fault, Bertens reeled off six-straight points to snatch the opening set.

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“I missed my opportunity in the first set. I changed my mind a couple of times in that tiebreak and it cost me,” Barty said.

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“I knew all I had to do was hang around and fight as hard as I could and try to change it to my favour.”

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