Stan Wawrinka has been in good form.
Stan Wawrinka has been in good form. Aap Images

Veteran ready for test with Stan

AT 37 years and 65 days, Czech qualifier Radek Stepanek became the oldest man to win a match at the Australian Open in 38 years when he beat Japan's Tatsuma Ito 6-4 6-3 6-7 6-2 in the first round.

Stepanek, who turned pro in 1996, was the oldest winner since Australia's Bob Carmichael (38 years and 183 days) and Ken Rosewall (44 years and 62 days) in 1978.

The Czech will find it tough to repeat the dose today, however, when he comes up against 2014 champion Stan Wawrinka.

The Swiss No.4 seed was ahead 7-6 6-3 in his first-round match against Dmitry Tursunov when the Russian retired injured.

Tursunov, playing his first Grand Slam main draw match since the 2014 US Open after battling a succession of foot injuries, had medical treatment for a hip complaint during the second set, before telling the umpire he was unable to continue.

Wawrinka (pictured) was the only man to beat world No.1 Novak Djokovic in a Grand Slam match last year, overpowering the Serb in the final of the French Open.

The pair has met twice in the Australian Open in the past three years, with both matches proving to be epic battles.

Djokovic prevailed 12-10 in the fifth set in a fourth round match in 2013, before Wawrinka got revenge the following year, winning 6-0 in the fifth set before going on to beat Rafael Nadal in the final.

Wawrinka is drawn to meet Fernando Verdasco in the quarter-finals and Andy Murray in the semi-finals.
 


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