-- MELBOURNE, Australia -- We're not quite at the "Andy who?" stage, but? Kyle Edmund?is making people forget about the former world No. 1 pretty quickly.?
On Tuesday at the Australian Open, he continued a string of upsets in the past couple of days by shocking No. 3-ranked Grigor Dimitrov 6-4, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 to reach his first Grand Slam semifinal.?
In fact, before this week, Edmund had never played in a major quarterfinal, nor had he won five consecutive matches at the tour level. Oh, and to boot, he had lost both of his previous matches against Dimitrov and had never beaten a top-five player. So basically, there was no reason to think Edmund could win. Except he did.?
With England's? Andy Murray?at home recovering from recent hip surgery, his 23-year-old countryman was celebrated by the British press and fans, with the former world No. 1 among those who took to social media to congratulate Edmund.?
"I know what it feels like to be Andy Murray the last eight years," Edmund said after the victory. "It's probably the first time I've done well on my own, so there's more attention there. Of course you take it in stride."
Dimitrov credited Edmund, saying his opponent "deserved to win -- simple as that." He also said Edmund should enter his semifinal against Marin Cilic -- who defeated an injury-stricken Rafael Nadal -- with confidence.
"I mean, as I said, I watched pretty much all [of Edmund's] matches out here," Dimitrov said. "For sure, he won a lot of tough matches. I think once you reach that stage of a Grand Slam, anything can happen really. It's really how much you want it.
"These kind of opportunities don't always come on the door. So once you have them, try to make the most out of them. That's the best thing. Two in the quarter and one comes out a winner."
If Edmund does continue his run, you can rest assured his popularity will rise.?
From the feel-good player of the day in Edmund to the feel-bad-for- Rafa?saga. The world No. 1 and Marin Cilic?slugged ball after ball back and forth for three sets and three hours. In the fourth, Cilic took advantage of an ailing Nadal, and two games into the fifth, Rafa retired with a right leg injury.?
Just like that, a match that seemed like it might bleed past midnight had ended.?
So Rafa is out of the Aussie Open. It's not the first time he has suffered an injury setback. Far from it. Nonetheless, the loss stung, especially with expectations so high.?
Here's a little of what Nadal said when pressed in his news conference about the injury.?
With his 3-6, 6-3, 6-7 (5), 6-2, 2-0 win, Cilic advances to take on Edmund on Thursday night for a place in the year's first Grand Slam final.?
Kim Clijsters retired six years ago, but her presence is still felt at Melbourne Park. Look no further than Belgian countrywoman Elise Mertens, who Tuesday continued her strong, surprising run Down Under.?
On Tuesday, Mertens upset fourth seed Elina Svitolina 6-4, 6-0, stretching her winning streak to 10 matches. Mertens? is through to the semifinals in her first career Australian Open main-draw appearance.
Mertens became the fifth woman to accomplish that feat. The past four?? Johanna Konta (2006), Eugenie Bouchard (2014), Carla Su?rez Navarro (2009) and Venus Williams (1998).?
Mertens is also the first Belgian since Clijsters in 2012 to reach the semis in Australia.
Mertens, ranked 37th, trains at Clijsters' academy in Belgium, and in her postmatch news conference, she said the four-time Grand Slam champion was a big source of inspiration.
Q:?Can you describe the first time you saw Kim Clijsters play, where you were and what you thought?
Mertens: I was really young, really young.
Well, of course on TV. But, well, first time I don't really remember anymore because I was, I think, 5 years old.
Q: Did you grow up idolizing her?
Mertens: Yeah, of course, of course. Her and Justine Henin, the two big favorites in Belgium at that time. I mean, what they achieved was amazing, and of course I looked up to them.
Q: What is the secret of Belgian tennis, especially with women?
Mertens: Yeah, I don't know. That's a difficult one.
I practice at the Kim Clijsters Academy. We have a really good structure. Also, when I started working with my coach, really good structure, good team.
Also, when I come home I feel like I'm home. Also, at the academy, I feel like very at home, actually. So I feel really good there.
Q: You said on court you had a text message from Kim last night. Have you heard from her since?
Mertens: I didn't really put my phone on yet. I will do that later. But I think I will have a message, yes.
It's fair to say Mischa Zverev won't look back on this Australian Open fondly after being fined $45,000 for a poor performance in his first-round match against tournament sensation Hyeon Chung.
It is the largest penalty ever assessed to an individual during a Grand Slam tournament for an on-site transgression.
Zverev was punished under a new rule implemented by the Grand Slam Board in the offseason intended to deter players with pre-existing injuries to start a tournament and retire from their first-round matches.
The No. 32-seeded Zverev was trailing Chung 6-2, 4-1 when he retired from the match. Zverev's fine nearly equals his first-round prize money of AU$60,000 Australian ($47,900).
Zverev was the only player to retire from a first-round match at the Australian Open.