Alex Bolt shows respect for Stan Wawrinka ahead of Melbourne clash

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Alex Bolt shows respect for Stan Wawrinka ahead of Melbourne clash

Australian tennis player Alex Bolt claimed a surprise win over Mackenzie McDonald at the Murray River Open to set up a third round clash against No. 1 seed Stan Wawrinka. Bolt, ranked at No. 174 in the world, surprised Thanasi Kokkinakis in the first round before he beat McDonald 6-4 6-7 (7) 7-5.

"Definitely, when I saw that (name) I thought that was pretty cool,” Bolt said after beating McDonald, per Tennis Australia. "I mean it’s almost like a fairy-tale story, really, and hopefully I can keep the run going”.

McDonald recovered from a break down in the third set but then once again dropped his serve in the 12th game as Bolt claimed a tight win. "Macky is a good player. I’ve played him a few times before. I knew it was always going to be a tough match.

It had its ups and downs for both of us,” Bolt related. “I think both of us were quite patchy throughout the whole match, but fortunate enough for me, I felt like I’d come out on top”.

Bolt ready to face Wawrinka

"I felt like throughout the end of the second set and the start of the third set I started to get a bit passive and wasn’t playing to my strengths and using my weapons that I have,” Bolt noted.

“I felt like towards the end of the third set there, I really started to back myself and really look for my forehand and take advantage of that”. Bolt is now preparing for one of the biggest matches of his career as he plays next against three-time Grand Slam champion Wawrinka.

"Stan, he’s a great of the game. He’s won Slams, he’s one of the best players in the world right now,” said Bolt. “I’m just looking forward to the opportunity to be able to play again”.