Queen's Club, United Kingdom, 20 June 2024 | Rhys de Deugd

Rinky Hijikata has starred on Centre Court at the Queen’s Club, reaching his first ATP 500 quarterfinal with a win over world No.35 Matteo Arnaldi.

In two tiebreak sets, Hijikata fought his way through and only recorded five unforced errors for the match to notch the fourth tour-level quarterfinal of his career.

“Really pumped. Especially after the last few months that I’ve had,” Hijikata said after the 7-6(0) 7-6(7) victory.

“I said at the French (Open) that felt like I was in for a big result and I just had to kind of keep plugging away at it. So to come here and win a couple matches on the trot (is something) I’m really happy about and hopefully I can keep going.”

The win assures Hijikata will receive a large rankings boost, and can expect to break back into the world’s top 75 next week.

In the quarterfinals, the 23-year-old will face an American of the same age in Sebastian Korda.

“I’ve just gotta kind of try to figure out a way where I can disrupt them a little bit, and play some good grass-court tennis, and just try compete as well as I can,” Hijikata said.

Joining Hijikata in the quarterfinals is fellow Sydneysider Jordan Thompson, who moved passed the round of 16 at Queen’s for the first time in his career.

Thompson raced to a 4-1 lead in the opening set before his opponent, Andy Murray, was forced to retire.

Thompson holds the five-time Queen’s title-winner in very high regard and showed him utmost respect.

“He’s a great champion,” Thompson said. “I learned a lot of things watching him play. It’s an honour to share the court with him, but it’s just sad that it ended like that.”

Next up, Thompson will take on No.4 seed Taylor Fritz for a place in his first semifinal at the prestigious grass-court event.

Aussies in action – Queen’s Club

Men’s singles, second round
[Q] Rinky Hijikata (AUS) d Matteo Arnaldi (ITA) 7-6(0) 7-6(7)
Jordan Thompson (AUS) d [WC] Andy Murray (GBR) 4-1 ret.

Men’s singles, quarterfinals
[Q] Rinky Hijikata (AUS) v Sebastian Korda (USA)
Jordan Thompson (AUS) v [4] Taylor Fritz (USA)

Men’s doubles, first round
[1] Matt Ebden (AUS)/Rohan Bopanna (IND) v Alexander Erler (AUT)/Lucas Miedler (AUT)
Alex de Minaur (AUS)/Sebastian Korda (USA) v [2] Rajeev Ram (USA)/Joe Salisbury (GBR)

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