Melbourne: Rising American star Sebastian Korda battled to his first career five-set win to stay alive at the Australian Open on Wednesday — then spoke of taking inspiration from his Grand Slam-winning father.
The 21-year-old is part of the successful Korda sporting family — dad Petr won the 1998 Australian Open and both of his sisters, Jessica and Nelly, are top professional golfers.
Korda, who is making his debut at Melbourne Park, showed he is a chip off the old block as he followed up his win over British 12th seed Cameron Norrie with a gutsy 3-6, 6-4, 6-7 (2/7), 7-5, 7-6 (8/6) victory over Frenchman Corentin Moutet.
Korda will now face 19th seed Pablo Carreno Busta in the third round.
“Lots of success here in Australia,” he told reporters, referring to victories for both sisters at the women’s Australian Open golf tournament.
“I’m always super happy to be here. The fans are incredible, the tournament’s unbelievable and I’m just really comfortable here. They always make me feel like home here.”
Korda said as a youngster he would watch DVDs of his father winning big tennis tournaments.
“When I was a little kid we had it on a DVD player so I would always play it and always found inspiration from that,” he said.
“I mean, he did something that everyone whoever picks up a tennis racquet wants to achieve and I’m really proud of it.
“And whenever I have the chance I try to watch something, one of his matches.
“He was always entertaining, he was flashy and just a fun person to watch.”