Djokovic dispatches old rival Nishikori to reach fourth round | Inquirer Sports
Close  

Djokovic dispatches old rival Nishikori to reach fourth round

/ 07:43 AM September 05, 2021
Tennis: US Open, Novak, Djokovic

Sep 4, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Novak Djokovic of Serbia after beating Kei Nishikori of Japan in a third round match on day six of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK — After tackling two U.S. Open debutants Novak Djokovic faced an old foe on Saturday, reaching the fourth round with a 6-7(4) 6-3 6-3 6-2 win over Kei Nishikori to stay on course for a record 21st major title that would complete the calendar Grand Slam.

Following first ever meetings with Denmark’s Holger Rune and Dutchman Tallon Griekspoor, Djokovic faced a seasoned campaigner in Nishikori, who was runner-up at the 2014 U.S. Open having beaten the Serb to move into that year’s final.

ADVERTISEMENT

Since then it has been one-way traffic in the rivalry with Djokovic sweeping 17 straight contests against the Japanese player, improving his head-to-head record to 18-2.

But after Nishikori’s 6-2 6-0 quarter-final thumping at the hands of the world number one at the Tokyo Olympics, the 31-year-old made Djokovic sweat for his victory.

FEATURED STORIES

Usually the headliner under the Arthur Ashe Stadium lights, Djokovic made a matinee appearance on Saturday and appeared unsettled by the conditions as he went to work under a blazing sun.

A tight opening set was snatched by Nishikori in a tiebreak before Djokovic began to settle into the contest, breaking the Japanese player twice in the second on his way to levelling the match at a set apiece.

In another workmanlike effort, the top seed took the decisive break in the third to go ahead 5-3 then held serve for a 2-1 lead.

Now in control, Djokovic would leave Nishikori no openings to hope for a comeback, storming through the last four games of the fourth set to close out the contest in style.

Djokovic now awaits the winner of the match between U.S. wildcard Jenson Brooksby and Russian Aslan Karatsev.

Get the hottest sports news straight into your inbox

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.
Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: Kei Nishikori, Novak Djokovic, US Tennis Open
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.

Subscribe to our sports news

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and
acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.



© Copyright 1997-2021 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.