'I tore it': John Millman's stunning secret during Roger Federer 'miracle'

Sam Goodwin
Sports Editor

John Millman has revealed he nearly beat Roger Federer at the Australian Open with a torn calf.

The Aussie tennis star almost pulled off the second upset over Federer of his career, but failed to convert after leading 8-4 in the fifth set tiebreaker.

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As impressive as Millman’s performance against Federer was, it’s now taken on a whole new perspective.

Speaking ahead of Australia’s Davis Cup clash with Brazil on Friday, Millman said he played against Federer with a debilitating injury.

John Millman narrowly lost to Roger Federer at the Australian Open. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

“I tore my calf before the tournament and made the calf tear a fair bit worse in that match,” he told the Adelaide Advertiser.

“I am fully recovered now, the last couple of weeks on the tour has been trying to find my feet again but this camp has come really at the right time and I am feeling really good.”

Millman famously beat Federer at the 2018 US Open and almost repeated the trick at Melbourne Park in January.

A number of tennis fans described Federer’s comeback in the fifth set as a ‘miracle’.

Injury-hit Aussies have ‘no excuses’

Australia's captain Lleyton Hewitt says there will be no excuses for his team when the Davis Cup tie against Brazil starts on Friday.

Hewitt has been plotting for weeks about how best to down the Brazilians and advance to the cup finals in November in Spain.

Despite injuries sidelining his top-ranked pair duo of Alex de Minaur and Nick Kyrgios, the opening day draw has gone to Hewitt's plan.

Australia's world No.63 Thompson opens the tie against Brazil's world No.82 Thiago Monteiro, followed by world No.43 Millman against rising star Thiago Seyboth Wild, who won his first ATP title last week at the Chile Open.

John Millman in action against Roger Federer at the Australian Open. (Photo by Fred Lee/Getty Images)

“We have been planning for that all week,” Hewitt said of Friday's matches.

“Obviously Thommo has got to get used to a left-hander and I feel very confident in the game styles and how that may play out.

“And then Johnny against the young kid coming back from clay; it's an adjustment to playing on hard court.

“We have scouted as much as we can.

“You can prepare but also there's going to be slight changes as well, dealing with the conditions and what they throw at us in the first set.

“Best-of-three set matches, you have got be ready to change pretty quickly if things aren't going well."

On Saturday, Hewitt has selected James Duckworth for his cup debut in the doubles, teaming with John Peers against Brazilian pair Marcelo Demoliner and Felipe Meligeni Rodrigues Alves, before the reverse singles.

with AAP