Novak Djokovic court hearing ends, exemption ‘was VALID’, Kyrgios blasts Nadal

RAFAEL NADAL is back in action today as he looks to capitalise on Novak Djokovic’s absence to win a first Australian Open since 2009.

Djokovic was deported from the country and has also had his participation at Roland Garros thrown into doubt.

Spaniard Nadal takes on Olympic silver medallist Karen Khachanov at the Rod Laver Arena.

Meanwhile, Naomi Osaka has been knocked out by American Amanda Anisimova.

But it was a bad day for the Brits yesterday, with Emma Raducanu and Andy Murray both being eliminated.


Read our Novak Djokovic live blog below for ALL the latest updates…

  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 4-1* Khachanov

    Rafael Nadal has dropped just two points on serve in this set – one of them being a double fault.

    At the end of the third set Khachanov looked like he was on a roll, but he just hasn’t been able to convert that into this set.

    And now the Russian looks like he’s beaten.

  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, *4-1 Khachanov – Nadal holds

    Nadal comes roaring back though, registering a convincing service hold to love.

    He’s closing in on victory now…

  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 3-1* Khachanov

    Khachanov is on the board in set four, as he holds on his own serve to register his first game of the set.

    At 30-30 it looked like Nadal might have had another shot at a break, but the Russian did brilliantly to keep his nerve.

  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, *3-0 Khachanov

    And win the game he does, in convincing fashion.

    After racing into a 40-0 lead Khachanov hits back to make it 40-15, but on the following point he can only return Nadal’s serve into the net.

    The Russian No28 seed looks deflated now, and is staring down the barrel of defeat.

  • In the driving seat

    After a setback in set three, Nadal is back in control of this epic match.

    Credit: AP
  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, *2-0 Khachanov

    So if Nadal wins this game on his own serve it will be 3-0 to the Spaniard in the fourth set.

    Would there be any way back from that for Khachanov?

  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 2-0* – Nadal breaks

    Is that the deciding moment of the match?

    Nadal is down on his hunches in joy as a backhand winner down the sideline breaks Khachanov’s serve early in the fourth set!

    What a shot!

  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 1-0* Khachanov

    Thats superb as well!

    A cross-court forehand winner of his own from Khachanov sends the game to deuce!

  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 1-0* Khachanov

    WOW! Two incredible forehand winners see Nadal eek out a break point at 30-40.

    This is a massive moment in the match…

  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 1-0* Khachanov

    Local time in Melbourne is approaching midnight.

    It’s going to be a late one for the spectators, as this one doesn’t look anywhere close to finishing.

  • Nadal *6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 1-0 Khachanov

    It’s Nadal serving first in the fourth set, with this match now nearing the 2-and-a-half hour mark.

    And the Spaniard holds comfortably, that’s the exact start he would’ve wanted.

    The pressure is back on Khachanov now.

  • Khachanov back in the game

    This match is nowhere near finished yet!

    Strap yourselves in, it could be going all the way!

    Credit: EPA
    Credit: Reuters
  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 3-6* Khachanov – Khachanov wins set

    It’s a hold to love for Khachanov, and he takes the third set of the match!

    The winning point is met by a huge roar of approval from the Russian, who has vastly improved as the match has progressed.

    Can he kick on from here?

  • Nadal *6-3, 6-2, 3-5 Khachanov

    The Russian races into a 30-0 lead, the exact start he would have wanted while serving for the set.

    Make that 40-0, with a huge slice of luck, as a Khachanov backhand catches the top of the net, wrong-footing Nadal completely.

  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 3-5* Khachanov

    Nadal comfortably holds on serve, so now it will be Khachanov serving to win the third set

    He’ll have new balls to do it with, as Nadal switches rackets too.

  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 2-5* Khachanov

    Kachanov holds his nerve on serve, and is now just one game away from taking the set.

    He doesn’t need to break Nadal here, but he would dearly love to.

  • Deep into the third set

    This gruelling match looks like it’s starting to take its toll on Nadal…

    Credit: AFP
  • Nadal *6-3, 6-2, 2-4 Khachanov

    Nadal saves the game with two quick-fire points.

    Khachanov is still in the driving seat of this set but that game will have taken a lot out of him, in a losing effort, as well.

  • Nadal *6-3, 6-2, 1-4 Khachanov

    There’s another break point for Khachanov as Nadal is off the mark with a backhand, sending it out on the sideline.

    Again he can’t take it though due to an unforced error, this time into the net.

    We’re back at deuce.

  • Nadal *6-3, 6-2, 1-4 Khachanov

    Another double fault from Nadal hands Khachanov a break point!

    The Russian can’t take it though as he sends a forehand too long, but the game is still going to deuce.

  • Nadal *6-3, 6-2, 1-4 Khachanov

    Nervy from Nadal, as the Spaniard opens his service game with a fourth double fault of the match.

    Two hours now this contest had been going, and with Khachanov in pole position to take the third set, it looks like it could be going for a while longer yet.

  • Khachanov leading set three

    Khachanov absolutely loved that!

    Credit: Reuters
  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 1-4* Khachanov – Khachanov holds

    There’s the game!

    That’s a cracking hold from Khachanov, who is pushed all the way by Nadal on his own service game.

    The No28 seed has just opened up a bit of breathing room in the set now.

  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 1-3* Khachanov

    Khachanov saves the break point, following a quite breathless rally!

    Nadal is running from left to right, but somehow manages to keep returning Khachanov’s booming shots.

    Finally though the Russian finds a winner, and takes the game back to deuce.

  • Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 1-3* Khachanov

    And there’s the second break point saved, as Khachanov sends the game to deuce courtesy of a crunching forehand winner.

    An unforced error though hands Nadal another break point, as Khachanov sends the ball wide of the sideline with half of the court at his mercy.

    He really needs this.