Friday, June 9, 2023

A quiet Kyrgios wins and returns to the quarters of Wimbledon

Wimbledon, England ( Associated Press) – Quieter and calmer than his previous doubles, Nick Kyrgios recovered from a right shoulder problem to complete a flurry of 35 aces and win 4-6, 6-4, 7 on Monday. -6(2), 3-6, 6-2 over Brandon Nakashima at Wimbledon, reaching his first Grand Slam quarterfinal in seven and a half years.

Kyrgios improved to 6–0 in five sets at the All England Club. He also leads the tour with his 11 wins on grass.

“I want a glass of wine tonight. Without a doubt,” Kyrgios said in a courtside interview, addressing the audience at Center Court. He did so after replacing shoes and hats with the mandatory white for a red dress.

Before an almost full home on center court, the 27-year-old Australian had moments when he unleashed his usual repertoire on his shots – an underarm serve or a return between the legs.

So are the tantrums that have fined him $10,000 for spitting on a spectator at the end of a first-round match and $4,000 for speaking obscenities in his stormy third-round victory over Stefanos Tsitsipas.

Against American Nakashima, Kyrgios caught the attention of a trainer between sets, who massaged his shoulder. During part of the match, Kyrgios’ serve dropped from 135 mph to 110 mph. But he eventually recovered and revealed his power over and over again.

“I have played a lot in the last month and a half. Proud to be able to straighten the course”, Kyrgios said. “To be honest, I started thinking about it: I’ve never lost a five-set match here… I said to myself: ‘I’ve been here before and I’ve done it before.

This will be the third time that Kyrgios will jump in a big match to play a quarterfinal duel. The last one was at Wimbledon in 2014 as a teenager, and he defeated Rafael Nadal at his March – and 2015 – Australian Open.

“I had to measure myself against one of the greatest players in history here and he beat Nadal,” Kyrgios recalled. “These are the things that are on my mind.”

Kyrgios will now face Christian Garin. The 26-year-old Chile made his first comeback after falling two sets down to save two match points after beating Australian Alex de Minaur (19) 2-6, 5-7, 7-6(3), 6-4. 7-6 (10-6) after more than 4 and a half hours of play.

Garin, ranked 43rd in the world rankings, will make his first Grand Slam quarterfinal appearance in his 15th appearance.

Another quarterfinal duel in the same category will see Rafael Nadal – 22-time major champion – against American Taylor Fritz (seeded 11th).

Looking for a third title at Wimbledon and his third anointing at a Slam this year, Nadal defeated 21st seed Boutique van de Zandschulp of the Netherlands 6-4, 6-2, 7-6 (6). The 24-year-old Fritz hasn’t missed a set and will go into the quarter-finals with a 6-3, 6-1, 6-4 win over Australian debutant Jason Kubler.

“It doesn’t feel real,” said Fritz.

Kyrgios said he feels like a 27-year veteran, describing himself as “prudent” and “mature”.

Those are not words usually associated with Kyrgios, but as he indicated in his press conference: “None of you know me well. You’re not with me. They see what they see.” Let’s see on the field. It’s always been like a roller coaster. So I understand there are a lot of different things to be said… People like to give their opinion.”

Highlighting that that has changed, Kyrgios recalled losing to Nadal in the second round in 2019: “My agent had to pick me up from the pub at 4 in the morning. I have changed a lot, no doubt about it.”

The only Grand Slam winner still alive in the women’s tournament is Simona Halep (seeded 19th). Streak beat fourth seed Paula Badosa of Spain 6-1, 6-2 to extend her winning streak to 11.

After Badosa’s elimination, the only woman to rank higher than Halep is Third Ons Jabur.

Halep will face Amanda Anisimova (20). The American defeated French woman Harmony Tan, who had ousted Serena Williams in the first round, 6-2, 6-3. Anisimova eliminated Roland Garros finalist Coco Garoff last month.

The other quarter-final clash of the bracket will be between Kazakh Elena Rybkina (seeded 17th) and Australian Ajla Tomljanovic. Rybakina defeated the Croatian 7-5, 6-3 to reach the quarter-finals of Wimbledon for the first time. While Tomljanovic defeated Alize Cornet of France 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 to reach this position for the second year in a row.

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
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