Nadal, Kyrgios stay on collision course

Last Updated: 23/01/20 12:49pm

Rafael Nadal came through against Federico Delbonis at the Australian Open on Thursday
Rafael Nadal came through against Federico Delbonis at the Australian Open on Thursday

World No 1 Rafael Nadal rolled over Federico Delbonis, while Nick Kyrgios took the scenic route against Gilles Simon as the pair stayed on course for a fourth-round meeting at the Australian Open.

Nadal was given a workout by Argentina’s Delbonis before coming through 6-3 7-6 (7-4) 6-1 on Rod Laver Arena.

The contest took two hours and 30 minutes, with the second set the key as Nadal withstood pressure to clinch it on a tie-break before running away with the third.

Nadal said: “Conditions are a little bit slower, it’s cooler tonight. I think it has been a tough match.

“I lost a lot of opportunities on the break points but I found a way finally to win that second set and in the third I played a little bit more aggressive.”

Nadal gave the ball girl a sweet peck on the cheek after his miscued shot hit her on the head
Nadal gave the ball girl a sweet peck on the cheek after his miscued shot hit her on the head

The worst moment for Nadal came when he accidentally struck a ball girl in the head with a miscued forehand.

The Spaniard went straight to check on the youngster, who thankfully was unhurt, giving her a peck on the cheek by way of consolation.

“I was so scared for her,” he said. “She was a super brave girl.”

Nick Kyrgios celebrates after victory over Gilles Simon
Nick Kyrgios celebrates after victory over Gilles Simon

Kyrgios beat Simon 6-2 6-4 4-6 7-5 as he reached the third round of his home tournament for the fourth time in his career.

The Australian No 1 looked in complete control, and unusually composed, at two sets and a break up but lost four straight games at the end of the third set.

He took his frustration out on his team sat in the stands and seemed close to losing his cool completely but a break of serve in the 11th game of the fourth set helped him clinch victory.

Both men, meanwhile, mocked the service tics of Nadal, who Kyrgios could meet in the fourth round.

I could have gone to a very dark place in the fourth set.

Nick Kyrgios

Kyrgios said: “I definitely lost my way a little bit, he’s a tough competitor, he knows how to win matches.

“I just tried to refocus. I could have gone to a very dark place in the fourth set.

“I’m just happy to get through. It could have been very interesting if it had gone to a fifth set.”

Taylor Fritz recorded a superb 4-6 6-7 (5-7) 7-6 (7-4) 6-2 6-2 comeback victory over two-time Grand Slam finalist Kevin Anderson gives America five men in the third round for the first time since 2008.

The 2014 Australian Open champion, Stan Wawrinka battled past Italy’s Andreas Seppi to win 4-6 7-5 6-3 3-6 6-4.

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Source : Sky Sports