clearn.png
Monday February 6th, 2023 9:15PM

Khachanov stops Kyrgios in 5 sets; faces Ruud in semifinals

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

NEW YORK (AP) — Karen Khachanov stood on court, arms raised, basking in a rowdy crowd's cheers after reaching his first Grand Slam semifinal at the U.S. Open. Not far away, Nick Kyrgios took out some of his frustration at the so-close-yet-so-far result on a pair of rackets.

First, shortly after the last point of his 7-5, 4-6, 7-5, 6-7 (3), 6-4 loss to Khachanov, Kyrgios cracked his piece of equipment against the ground — once, twice, three, four times. Then, for good measure, Kyrgios grabbed yet another racket out of his bag, reared back and hit that one on the sideline, too.

Kyrgios could not quite follow up his victory over defending champion Daniil Medvedev at Flushing Meadows, bowing out in a high-quality, topsy-turvy quarterfinal that began Tuesday night and concluded more than 3 1/2 hours later at about 1 a.m. Wednesday in Arthur Ashe Stadium.

“It’s just devastating. Like, it’s heartbreaking,” said Kyrgios, a 27-year-old from Australia who was the runner-up at Wimbledon in July. “Pretty much every other tournament during the year is a waste of time, really. You should just run up and show up at a Grand Slam. That’s what you’re remembered by.”

Asked about Kyrgios' display of disappointment, Khachanov said he saw “rackets were flying,” and added: “I feel the pain for him.”

Early in the match, two spectators were kicked out after one gave the other a haircut in the stands. By the end, the late-staying spectators were pulling for Kyrgios loudly. At one point in the fourth set, chair umpire James Keothavong pleaded: “Once again, ladies and gentlemen: Respect both the players.”

“I was prepared. I was expecting that the crowd would be more for him, that he was the favorite in their eyes,” said the No. 27-seeded Khachanov had been 0-2 in major quarterfinals before this one against No. 23 Kyrgios.

Khachanov will face No. 5 Casper Ruud on Friday for a berth in the championship match.

“I'm really proud of myself,” Khachanov said. “I was really focused from the beginning to the end.”

Both he and Kyrgios are equipped with booming serves, and they combined for 61 aces (31 by Kyrgios). They combined for 138 total winners (75 by Kyrgios).

Two stats that were real difference-makers: Kyrgios made 58 unforced errors, Khachanov 31. And Khachanov saved 7 of 9 break points he faced.

The breakthrough at Wimbledon, and two recent victories over No. 1 Medvedev — including in the fourth round, ending his title defense — made Kyrgios a popular pick to claim his first Grand Slam title at Flushing Meadows.

Khachanov was not allowed to play at Wimbledon this year after the All England Club banned all players from his country, Russia, and Belarus because of the invasion of Ukraine.

Against Kyrgios, he picked up key breaks of serve in the last game of the first and third sets. After the opener, Kyrgios complained of a sore knee and was visited by a trainer.

He did not appear to show any ill effects once play resumed, and broke early in the second.

Kyrgios had a chance to break again at 4-all in the third, but couldn’t convert, flubbing a forehand, then spiked his racket. Two games later, he put a backhand into the net to drop that set, then sat in his changeover chair, dumped his racket and threw a drink, drawing a warning for unsportsmanlike conduct from Keothavong.

Khachanov came within two points of victory while ahead 6-5 as Kyrgios served in the fourth set. Kyrgios held on there and dominated the ensuing tiebreaker to force a fifth.

Then Khachanov broke to begin the last set, soon was up 3-1 and was on his way.

“The deeper you go, the expectations rise up,” he said. “I did a step forward.”

In Wednesday's quarterfinals, it'll be No. 3 Carlos Alcaraz vs. No. 11 Jannik Sinner, and No. 9 Andrey Rublev vs. No. 22 Frances Tiafoe.

None of the last eight men in the bracket has won a major title.

Ruud headed into the 2022 season with just one Grand Slam appearance that lasted as far as the fourth round anywhere and was determined to improve his record at the four most important events in tennis.

Then, a day before the Australian Open began in January, he twisted his ankle in practice and needed to withdraw. Hardly ideal. Just look at him now: Ruud is into the semifinals at the U.S. Open and has a shot at moving up to No. 1 in the ATP rankings, following a run to the final at the French Open.

The 23-year-old from Norway — who is coached by his father, former professional player Christian — parlayed what he called “a better start than I ever had before in a match” to a 6-1, 6-4, 7-6 (4) victory over 2021 Wimbledon runner-up Matteo Berrettini on Monday.

“During Paris, something clicked, and I feel like I, this year, have sort of figured out the better way how to play five sets and knowing that it’s very different from playing best-of-three sets. ... Sometimes realizing, or knowing, that you can sort of let one set go every once in a while to save some energy for the rest of the sets,” said Ruud, 12-2 in Grand Slam play in 2022. “So I think I matured."

___

More AP coverage of U.S. Open tennis: https://apnews.com/hub/us-open-tennis-championships and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Tennis, AP Sports - Men's Tennis
© Copyright 2023 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Dodgers outslug Giants 6-3, Muncy homers twice
Joey Gallo blasted a go-ahead, three-run homer in the second inning and Max Muncy added a pair of solo shots in the Los Angeles Dodgers' 6-3 win over the San Francisco Giants
1:41AM ( 28 minutes ago )
Khachanov stops Kyrgios in 5 sets; faces Ruud in semifinals
Karen Khachanov has advanced to the first Grand Slam semifinal of his career by edging Nick Kyrgios 7-5, 4-6, 7-5, 6-7 (3), 6-4 at the U.S. Open
1:36AM ( 34 minutes ago )
AP Top 25 Reality Check: UF vaults in; Georgia changes minds
Florida entered the AP Top 25 with a bullet, landing at No. 12 after beating Utah
1:33AM ( 36 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Olson HR vs former team, surging Braves top A's, catch Mets
Matt Olson hit a three-run homer against his former club and the Atlanta Braves won their sixth in a row, outslugging the Oakland Athletics 10-9 and finally catching the slumping Mets atop the NL East
1:01AM ( 1 hour ago )
Kyrgios, Khachanov QF heads to 5th set | US Open updates
Nick Kyrgios and Karen Khachanov are heading to a fifth set in their U.S. Open quarterfinal
12:16AM ( 1 hour ago )
Sun rout Sky 104-80, force Game 5 in semifinals series
DeWanna Bonner and Courtney Williams each scored 19 points to help the Connecticut Sun rout the Chicago Sky 104-80 and force a decisive Game 5 in their WNBA playoff semifinal series
10:18PM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Sports
Ruud hopes Grand Slam success continues | US Open updates
Casper Ruud has found his niche in Grand Slam events
5:50PM ( 8 hours ago )
Jabeur 1st African women to reach semis | US Open updates
Fifth-seeded Ons Jabeur is headed to the U.S. Open semifinal
5:15PM ( 8 hours ago )
Ruud 1st Norwegian to reach Open semis | US Open updates
Casper Ruud is the first Norwegian to make a U.S. Open semifinal
3:03PM ( 11 hours ago )
AP Online Tennis
Pegula ousts Kvitova for 1st quarter in NY | US Open updates
Jessica Pegula has eliminated two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova 6-3, 6-2 to get to her third major quarterfinal of 2022 and reach that round for the first time at the U.S. Open
2:24PM ( 1 day ago )
Rublev tops Norrie, makes 6th Slam quarter | US Open updates
Andrey Rublev has reached his sixth Grand Slam quarterfinal by beating Cam Norrie 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 in a U.S. Open match delayed by about 25 minutes while the retractable roof remained open during a downpour
1:47PM ( 1 day ago )
Nadal, Swiatek try to reach quarterfinals | US Open updates
Play has started on Day 8 at the U.S. Open, with No. 7 seed Cam Norrie facing No. 9 Andrey Rublev in Louis Armstrong Stadium for a quarterfinal berth
11:26AM ( 1 day ago )
AP Sports - Men's Tennis
Dodgers outslug Giants 6-3, Muncy homers twice
Joey Gallo blasted a go-ahead, three-run homer in the second inning and Max Muncy added a pair of solo shots in the Los Angeles Dodgers' 6-3 win over the San Francisco Giants
1:41AM ( 28 minutes ago )
AP Top 25 Reality Check: UF vaults in; Georgia changes minds
Florida entered the AP Top 25 with a bullet, landing at No. 12 after beating Utah
1:33AM ( 36 minutes ago )
SEC teams get more chances for September statements
The Southeastern Conference was perhaps one blocked kick away from perfection on opening weekend, with a few impressive nonconference wins and some no-brainers
1:32AM ( 37 minutes ago )
Utah's Evan McMullin upends two-party fight for US Senate
Utah's Evan McMullin is emerging as the nation’s most competitive independent candidate running for U.S. Senate in the 2022 midterm elections
1:27AM ( 42 minutes ago )
East Timor president pushes back on environmental criticism
Give our country $100 billion — or stop lecturing us about making money from fossil fuels
1:25AM ( 45 minutes ago )