Rafael Nadal survives Karen Khachanov slugfest, Kevin Anderson wins another marathon

Rafael Nadal shouting

Defending champion Rafael Nadal produced a superb comeback to reach the fourth round of the US Open.

The world No 1 and top seed found himself a set and a break down against Karen Khachanov, but turned things around to win 5-7, 7-5, 7-6 (9-7), 7-6 (7-3) in four hours and 23 minutes.

The 22-year-old Khachanov went toe-to-toe with Nadal with the power-hitting and build a handy lead as he served for a two-set to love lead in the 10th game of the second set.

But Nadal stormed back with two consecutive breaks to level it at one set and then edged ahead via the tie-breaker in the third set.

The Russian also had a set point in the 13th game of the fourth set, but Nadal held firm and then wrapped things up in the tie-breaker.

“I was in a tough situation and I am very happy to escape,” Nadal said. “I served for the match at 5-4 in the fourth set but made mistakes.

“The good thing is that I will get another chance and I can work on things before the next match.”

The Spaniard will take on Georgia’s Nikoloz Basilashvili for a place in the quarter-finals after the world No 37 beat Guido Pella from Argentina 6-3, 6-4, 1-6, 7-6 (7-4).

Last year’s runner-up Kevin Anderson came through another five-set marathon as he beat Denis Shapovalov 4-6, 6-3, 6-4, 4-6, 6-4.

It was tough on the Canadian teenager as Anderson managed to break him only three times in the course of the match.

The South African will face Dominic Thiem in the fourth round after the ninth-seeded Austrian beat American Taylor Fritz 3-6, 6-3, 7-6 (7-5), 6-4.

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