America’s Frances Tiafoe, on Monday, September 5, pulled off a major upset after beating Rafael Nadal in the fourth round of the US Open men’s singles draw. In a thrilling four-setter at Arthur Ashe Stadium, Tiafoe won 6-4, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3.
Tiafoe, thereby, became the third player from America after Andy Roddick and James Blake to beat Nadal in a Grand Slam major. Tiafoe also became the youngest American since Roddick to qualify for the US Open quarters.
The 24-year-old was dominant throughout the match as he broke Nadal’s serve five out of eight times. After losing the first set, Nadal clawed back into the second, showing his ability to come back with his back pushed to the wall.
However, Tiafoe showed a great amount of composure to close out the last two sets. With the scoreline reading 5-3, 40-0 in favour of Tiafoe, Nadal had to save three match points, but after saving one of them, he ran out of gas.
— US Open Tennis (@usopen) September 5, 2022
It also happened to be Nadal’s maiden defeat in a Grand Slam in 2022. Nadal started the year with a victory in the Australian Open where he came back from behind to clinch a win in the final.
Thereafter, he won his 14th title in the French Open at Roland Garros, thereby carrying on his dominance in the clay-court tournament.
The veteran won his quarterfinal of Wimbledon 2022, but pulled out of his semi-final against Nick Kyrgios, the eventual runner-up, due to an injury.
With Thiem, Nadal, Daniil Medvedev already being knocked out, the winner of the men’s singles at Flushing Meadows remains to be seen.
— ENDS —