MELBOURNE, Jan 23 – Marcos Baghdatis retired from his match against Lleyton Hewitt on Saturday due to injury to gift the Australian a free pass to the fourth round at Melbourne Park.
Baghdatis and Hewitt played an epic five-set match that finished after 0430 in 2008, the latest-finishing match in the tournament’s history, but hopes of a similar hard-fought contest were snuffed out when the Cypriot walked off when trailing 4-2 in the second set after losing the first 6-0.
Baghdatis, who was attended to by trainers during the break after the first set, had experienced cramping in his five-set second-round win over David Ferrer.
“He just said he was obviously feeling it in his serve a little bit… his shoulder,” Hewitt said in a courtside interview after the match.
“He just wished me good luck.”
Hewitt will now meet Roger Federer in the fourth round.
(Reporting by Ian Ransom, Reuters)