Tennis Expert & Columnist
Kyle Edmund showed incredible self-belief to upset Grigor Dimitrov at the Australian Open
"I didn't see it coming this morning, didn't see it coming last week, didn't see it coming at the beginning of the tournament. That's why it's been such a surprise"
Last Updated: 23/01/18 10:20am
Kyle Edmund was better equipped at handling the big points against Grigor Dimitrov as he caused a major upset to reach the Australian Open semi-finals, says Barry Cowan.
Edmund's impressive run at the Australian Open has seen him become just the sixth British man to reach a singles semi-final of a Grand Slam in the open era.
The 23-year-old bludgeoned his way to a shock 6-4 3-6 6-3 6-4 victory over third seed Dimitrov to claim his place in the semi-finals.
Edmund, the world No 49, did not allow the occasion to get to him and took advantage of an opponent not at the top of his game to record a stunning victory.
He's got the biggest forehand in the world. I'm not saying it's the best, but in terms of power, it frightens players.
"I didn't see it coming this morning, didn't see it coming last week, didn't see it coming at the beginning of the tournament," admitted Cowan. "That's why it's been such a surprise from where Kyle was last year when he pushed the top players, but lost all 14 matches against top 10 players.
"The transformation in his tennis, his body language, his belief, and being able to step up and to come through that test today in tough, hot conditions. The biggest praise I can give Kyle is that he was in the quarter-finals for the first time and he handled the occasion better than his opponent, who is world number three."
Edmund has been working with Swedish coach Fidde Rosengren and the transformation has been clear to see with a stellar run in Melbourne.
"Kyle has always been an incredibly hard worker and has always wanted to be the best player he can be," said Cowan. "We all get impatient because you want the player you follow to be better, quicker, but for Kyle I think the disappointment of losing big matches closely when he was on the verge of winning, he's clearly taken the positives and the decision to hire a new coach in Rosengren was the right thing.
"You can see on court and anyone that has watched Kyle can see he looks different. That's so much about sport when you're up against your opponent and Dimitrov is seeing a different Kyle Edmund. He had the strut where Grigor didn't.
"The way the tournament is going, then who knows. Continue to go for your shots and you never know."
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If Edmund was to reach his first Grand Slam final in Melbourne, then he would replace Andy Murray as British No 1. And Cowan has been impressed with the standard of tennis Edmund has produced this year, but can't see him winning the title.
"He's going to be British number one at some stage because Andy Murray is not going to play until the grass-court period at the earliest," said Cowan. "You have got to have self-belief, you have got to have something to cling on to, something tangible.
"He's got the biggest forehand in the world. I'm not saying it's the best, but in terms of power, it frightens players. You've got to have something to really come out and dictate matches. He's able to do that and also improve errors in his game. The potential for Kyle going forward is going to be so exciting.
"Do I think he's going to lift the trophy on Sunday, no. Roger Federer is a level ahead of everyone else and then there's Rafael Nadal and the rest. But he's in the mix and if you're in the mix, that's all you can hope for."
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