For the second straight match German Alexander Zverev had to go five sets to stay alive at the US Open. Playing Frances Tiafoe for a fifth time, Zverev played another up-and-down match finally coming out with a 6-3, 3-6, 6-2, 2-6, 6-3 on Ashe to reach the third round.
While Zverev goes to 5-0 in 5-set matches this year, Tiafoe falls to 1-8 in 5-setters.
“I had a ton of chances today,” Tiafoe said. “It’s tough to go out like that.”
Stan Wawrinka advanced in four sets 6-4, 6-3, 6-7(3), 6-3 over Jeremy Chardy.
“I think today was a great battle,” said Wawrinka. “I served really well and played aggressive. It was a great atmosphere on this court. For me, I take it match after match and I’m happy with how I’m playing here.”
Wawrinka will now meet Italian lucky loser Paolo Lorenzi who will have no rest after a 4-hour, 48-minute marathon win over Miomir Kecmanovic.
Daniil Medvedev had to overcome cramps and Hugo Dellien 6-3, 7-5, 5-7, 6-3. Medvedev was visibly struggling and stumbling but somehow managed to recover. He also has to return Friday to face Feliciano Lopez late at night.
Denis Shapovalov set up a nice showdown with Gael Monfils. The Canadian who has been struggling for much of the year, scored a strong 6-4, 7-6(2), 6-2 victory over Swiss Henri Laaksonen.
“I just tried to stay focused, kept on the gas, and I think I played really well in the big moments today,” Shapovalov said. “At 5-4 he felt a little bit of pressure, doubled a couple of times. I was able to make a good return or two, then played a good tie-break. In the third set, I think I just maintained my level, and he went away a little bit.”
Nick Kyrgios won a drama-less victory over French Antoine Hoang 6-4, 6-2, 6-4.
“It was fun,” Kyrgios said. “I enjoy playing on Grandstand. I think that’s maybe my second or third match there. Tonight was tough. He’s a young opponent that I don’t really know that much of. He played well. Pretty happy with my performance.”
Next up for Nick will be a big showdown Saturday against the hot Andrey Rublev who had an easy day after Gilles Simon retired after the first set.
“He’s a very good player. He’s a young, fearless player who has been playing really well the last couple weeks. Obviously he had that win over Roger,” Kyrgios assessed.
“He plays big from both sides. He’s a great player. He’s going to have a great future. I’m not going to think about it too much. I have some doubles tomorrow. But, I mean, I played him once in Moscow. It was an incredibly tough match. So it’s going to be tough, for sure.”
Rafael Nadal was due to play in the evening against Thanasi Kokkinakis, but the oft-injured Australian pulled up lame with a shoulder injury.
Hyeong Chung saved a match point to deny the hard-luck Fernando Verdasco in five sets. John Isner, Alexei Popyrin, David Goffin and Diego Schwartzman were also winners.
Former champion Marin Cilic took his spot on Ashe and was locked in a tight battle with Cedrik Marcel Stebe.
On tap Friday, Roger Federer returns in the day to face Britain’s Dan Evans. Novak Djokovic will test that should in the evening against American Denis Kudla who plays his third straight Serb in the event.
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