Djokovic Rolls While Tsitsipas, Ruud Are Out At US Open; Alcaraz, Murray Thursday
Two more Top 8 seed fell Wednesday at the US Open. Stefanos Tsitsipas’s troubles continued at the final Major of the season going down to Swiss qualifier Dominic Stricker 7-5, 6-7(2-7), 6-7(5-7), 7-6(8-6), 6-3.
Tsitsipas, who has never been to the fourth round in New York, served for the match at 5-3 in the fourth but couldn’t put the 21-year-old lefty away. Stricker roared back to collect his biggest win in his very young career.
“I came out today pretty well. I felt good from the first set on. It was a tough battle but I am just super happy right now,” said Stricker who connected on 79 winners.. “I am going to enjoy the rest of the day and then I will recover for the next round.
“I was down 3-5 and then I came back in the fourth set. I don’t know how, but I did it somehow and then I kept playing very high level tennis. I am a bit speechless but it is a great day.”
Novak Djokovic kept motoring along cruising past Bernabe Zapata Miralles 6-4, 6-1, 6-1. The Serb is now 33-0 in the first two rounds at the US Open.
“He started off solid,” Djokovic said to the ATP. “We had some rallies. We kind of had to reach out for the towel basically after each one of those longer rallies, so it took a bit more time and effort. But, you know, one break was enough. Then after that, the second set I played really good. Beginning of the third, couple of close games, but last four games of the third I ended up really playing really well. I’m pleased with the way I’m feeling, playing on the court.”
Djokovic will now face his countryman Laslo Djere on Friday.
2022 finalist Casper Ruud won’t be back in the title match this year after getting bounced by the rising Chinese No. 1 Zhizhen Zhang in five sets 6-4, 5-7, 6-2, 0-6, 6-2.
Ruud finished his North American summer swing just 2-3.
Former champion Dominic Thiem has been struggling with a stomach issue and today it got the best of him as he retired down a set and a break at 7-6, 1-0 to Ben Shelton.
Americans had a good day as Tommy Paul authored his first career 0-2 comeback defeating Wimbledon quarterfinalist Roman Safiullin 3-6, 2-6, 6-2, 6-4, 6-3.
Taylor Fritz and Frances Tiafoe both cruised at night in straights over French fourth rounders. Fritz hammered Juan Pablo Varillas 6-1, 6-2, 6-2. Tiafoe was back on Ashe and eased past Sebastian Ofner 6-3, 6-1, 6-4.
“I thought I played really solid tonight. I thought I hit the ball really well from both sides,” Tiafoe said on court. “I could have served a bit better tonight, but other than that, I didn’t have so many unforced errors. I put a lot of pressure on him. I hit my forehand great tonight and moved really well tonight. A win is a win and we are on to the next one.”
Also, Alejandro Davidovich Fokina bested Juan Manuel Cerundolo 6-1, 6-4, 6-3. France’s Benjamin Bonzi upset No. 28 seed Christopher Eubanks 7-6(8-6), 2-6, 6-2, 7-6(9-7). Eubanks was also suffering from stomach issues.
The 22nd-seeded Adrian Mannarino ousted Fabian Marozsan of Hungary 3-6, 6-3, 6-4, 6-1. He’ll now face Tiafoe. Croatia’s Borna Gojo dismissed Mackenzie McDonald 6-3, 6-4, 6-4. Rinky Hijikata had a comfortable win over Hungary’s Marton Fucsovics 6-1, 6-2, 6-1. Aslan Karatsev got the better of Roberto Carballes Baena of Spain 6-2, 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(7-4). New face Jakub Mensik, 17, of the Czech Republic advanced past Titouan Droguet 3-6, 6-2, 7-6(7-1), 6-3 in a battle of qualifiers. And Jiri Vesely stunned the 20th-seeded Francisco Cerundolo 7-6(7-5), 6-2, 3-6, 2-6, 7-6(10-6). Not a good day to be a Cerundolo.
The second round concludes Thursday with the No. 1 Carlos Alcaraz drawing Lloyd Harris in a first-time meeting at night on Ashe.
No. 3 Daniil Medvedev will battle Christopher O’Connell. Medvedev leads 2-0 having defeated the Australian in their most recent meeting in the 2023 Doha QF.
No. 6 Jannik Sinner battles Lorenzo Sonego, No. 8 Andrey Rublev will battle Gael Monfils, No. 12 Alexander Zverev faces Daniel Altmaier, No. 13 Alex De Minaur collides with Yibing Wu, No. 16 Cameron Norrie draws Yu Hsiou Hsu, No. 17 Hubert Hurkacz will battle Jack Draper, No. 19 Grigor Dimitrov will meet Andy Murray, No. 30 Tomas Martin Etcheverry will test Stan Wawrink and John Isner collides with countryman Michael Mmoh.
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