Alex de Minaur has fuelled rumours he’s dating British tennis player Katie Boulter after a post-match act at the Australian Open on Thursday night.
The Aussie star made light work of Pablo Cuevas to advance to the third round, downing the Uruguayan 6-3 6-3 7-5 on Margaret Court Arena.
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His performance on the court was certainly eye-catching, but a post-match sign-off was even more so.
De Minaur wrote ‘KT’ on a TV camera lens as he was leaving the court, which many believe was a cute message to Katie (Boulter).
The Tennis Podcast Twitter account sent out a screenshot of De Minaur’s message, writing: “Alex de Minaur signing off with 'KT' - surely a reference to Katie Boulter as listeners to the pod will know.”
Spanish journalist Jose Morgado then appeared to confirm the rumours, replying to a fan that Boulter “is his girlfriend.”
— The Tennis Podcast (@TennisPodcast) February 11, 2021
— José Morgado (@josemorgado) February 11, 2021
KATIE BOULTER AND DE MINAUR WHAAAAAAAT
— Ana Maria (@anamis2002) February 11, 2021
Was I the only person who didn't know that Katie Boulter is dating Alex de Minaur?
— Frith (@pluckyloser) February 10, 2021
Demon and Boulter date??
— AJ (@ayejah86) February 11, 2021
De Minaur was reportedly dating Russian player Anastasia Potapova before moving on to Boulter.
His activity on Boulter’s social media pages has raised eyebrows in recent weeks, writing “Hi hello” with fire emojis on one of her photos on Instagram.
De Minaur in fine form at Australian Open
While compatriots Nick Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis spent three-and-a-half and four-and-half hours respectively on court in second round clashes, de Minaur checked out in under two.
It had followed an equally breezy first-round win over Tennys Sandgren and sets up a last 32 encounter with Fabio Fognini.
The Italian also endured a lengthy - and sometimes heated - second round encounter on Thursday, needing an epic fifth-set tiebreaker to beat countryman Salvatore Caruso.
De Minaur’s win already equals his best Open run of 2019, the 21-year-old missing last year’s Melbourne Park tilt with an abdominal injury.
With showers in the area, the roof was closed midway through the match, but it hardly mattered for de Minaur who offered perspective on the situation after the match.
“It got a little bit heavier out here but I just think the biggest thing is to adapt,” he said.
“That's one of the biggest things I've learned with the last year with COVID. You've got to be versatile; you've got to adapt and be ready for any situation.”
The fleet-footed 21-year-old set up the win with early breaks in the first two sets against the 35-year-old veteran.
The third was a little less straightforward.
At 3-4 de Minaur lost his way to leave Cuevas serving for the set. But regular programming quickly resumed when he broke straight back, held and cracked Cuevas again to seal the match.
“Pablo's a very skilled veteran player and I knew I had to be on top of my game to get through tonight,” de Minaur said.
“I'm very happy how I maintained my focus throughout the whole match and played some great quality tennis. Yet again, happy to be back.”
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