THE US Open has entered the quarter-final stage — with some of the tournament’s biggest names falling by the wayside.
That list includes the great Roger Federer, who was upset by Australia’s John Millman on Tuesday.
Now Spanish giant Rafael Nadal and Austrian upstart Dominic Thiem will hope to avoid a similar fate when they meet with a semi-final spot on the line.
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Earlier, Serena Williams steamrolled rival Kristina Pliskova 6-4 6-3 having been well and truly on the ropes early.
Williams fell behind 4-2 in the first set and looked out of sorts – before rattling off eight straight games to turn the quarter-final on its head.
She will next face Latvia’s Anastasija Sevastova, who upset defending champion Sloane Stephens 6-2 6-3 to reach her first grand slam semi-final.
In the men’s draw, Juan Martin del Potro reached the semi-finals for the third time in the past five grand slams after coming through a gruelling quarter-final battle with John Isner.
The two big men battered each other to near exhaustion in the heat and humidity in Arthur Ashe Stadium but it was the Argentine third seed who proved the stronger in a 6-7 (5-7) 6-3 7-6 (7-4) 6-2 victory that lasted three-and-a-half hours.
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Originally published as ‘Otherworldly tennis’: Nadal on top in US epic