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US Open: Pouille stuns Nadal as Djokovic, Kerber impress

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For the first time in 12 years, tennis star Rafael Nadal has failed to reach a quarterfinal in one of the four Grand Slams. The 30-year-old was beaten in five sets by 22-year-old Lucas Pouille in New York.

 

In the US Open’s best match so far, Rafael Nadal was beaten by 24th-seeded Lucas Pouille of France 6-1, 2-6, 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (6) in a four-hour match ending on Sunday evening in New York.

 

“My first match on the center court against Rafa,” Pouille said in his on-court interview. “Yeah, I could not dream better than this.”

In a close match, Nadal made some uncharacteristic errors, especially off his forehand. “I couldn’t believe he would miss it,” Pouille said of a key shot in the final set tiebreaker. “But he’s like every player. He feels the pressure, as well. Even if he’s one of the best, he feels the pressure.”

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“There were things I could do better. Had the right attitude. I [fought] right up to the last ball,” Nadal said after the match. “But I needed something else. I needed something more that was not there today.” In terms of overall points, the match could not have been closer: both men finished with 156 points.

Pouille had never reached a Grand Slam quarterfinal until Wimbledon this year. He has played three consecutive five-set matches in New York to advance to his second consecutive major quarterfinal.

Meanwhile, Serbia’s Novak Djokovic, the current world number one in men’s tennis, is through to the US Open quarter-finals after beating Kyle Edmund of Great Britain 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 early Monday.

Djokovic produced a flawless performance against world number 84 Edmund and will next face Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who knocked out American Jack Sock.

Djokovic has won 15 out of his 26 encounters with Tsonga.

In the women event, Petra Kvitová has been knocked out of the US Open in straight sets by second-seed Angelique Kerber of Germany.

Kerber advanced to the quarterfinals at Flushing Meadows by defeating the Czech on Sunday night: the final score was 6-3, 7-5.

Kvitova, who recent showed promising form with a bronze at the Olympic Games in Rio, made 43 unforced errors in the match, including seven double faults. The last double came on match point.

 

 

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