Rafael Nadal rolls on at US Open, Dominic Thiem up next for defending champ
Rafael Nadal was given some food for thought by Nikoloz Basilashvili in the last 16 at the US Open, but he ultimately had too much in his locker for the Georgian.
The defending champion raced into a two-set lead, but his unseeded opponent hit back to win the third set before Nadal wrapped it up 6-3, 6-3, 6-7 (6-8), 6-4 in three hours and 22 minutes.
Vaaaaaaamos!@RafaelNadal survives a physical battle against Basilashvili 6-3, 6-3, 6-7, 6-4 to reach the QF!
— US Open Tennis (@usopen) September 2, 2018
The Spaniard looked like he would steamroll Basilashvili, but the Georgian showed he was ready to play in the third set when he broke in game three. The advantage was short-lived as the Spaniard reclaimed the break in the next game.
Basilashvili, though, did get another opportunity in the tie-breaker and this time he made it stick to take it to a four sets.
The fourth set had barely started and Nadal was back in the ascendancy with a break in game one, but Basilashvili refused to go down without a fight as he broke back in game six only for the 17-time Grand Slam winner to hit back immediately.
And this time he made it stick.
Nadal will face Dominic Thiem for a place in semi-final after the Austrian brushed aside last year’s runner-up Kevin Anderson to reach the last four at Flushing Meadows for the first time.
The ninth-seeded Thiem, who lost this year’s French Open final against Nadal, produced a clinical display to beat the South African 7-5, 6-2, 7-6 (7-2).
Thiem broke once in the first set, twice in the second and then ran away with proceedings in the third-set tie-breaker.
“I’m happy that I made it, and it was an amazing victory over one of the best players right now,” he said. “Also first time quarter-finals outside Paris, but most of all, I’m happy with the performance.”
More from Tennis365:
Fame and fortune won’t detract from Emma Raducanu’s rise to the top – LTA chief
Lloyd has called for the newly-crowned US Open champion to be given “breathing space”.
Emma Raducanu arrives back in the UK after winning the US Open
Raducanu was pictured outside her house after travelling back from New York.
Introducing Wilson’s Blade v8 racket Emma Raducanu could use at the Australian Open
Emma Raducanu is set to be wielding a new-look weapon when he plays at the Australian Open in January.
Shock defeat for Andy Murray as he is beaten in Rennes
The Russian is ranked 42 places below Murray.
John McEnroe speaks for the first time about comments over Emma Raducanu’s Wimbledon exit
John McEnroe has insisted he has no…
Stunning TV figures for US Open finals confirm appeal of Emma Raducanu
The TV viewing figures are in for this year’s US Open and they confirm that more tuned in to watch the women’s final than the men’s final.
Emma Raducanu thinking about a return to the court after US Open heroics
Raducanu has admitted to still being on “cloud nine” after her stunning US Open victory.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp gives a glowing reference to Emma Raducanu
Jurgen Klopp has given newly crowned US Open champion Emma Raducanu a glowing endorsement.
Boris Johnson talks with Emma Raducanu and discusses growth of grassroots tennis
Jurgen Klopp and Jessica Ennis-Hill joined in with the widespread praise of the teenager from Kent.
Jurgen Klopp inspired by ‘talent of the century’ Emma Raducanu’s US Open win
The Reds boss was glued to his television on Saturday night.