Five-time champion Roger Federer was in imperious form in a 6-4, 6-1, 7-5 victory over Australian Nick Kyrgios on Saturday to reach the fourth round of the US Open.
The second-seeded Swiss improved to 3-1 against Kyrgios in his first Grand Slam meeting with the Aussie, who was expected to pose a threat after pushing Federer to three sets in their last two ATP meetings.
“I’m very happy to have won, I’m happy it was three (sets),” Federer said. “I enjoy playing against Nick, he always keeps you on the edge and it’s quite entertaining also for the opponent.”
Federer had the luxury of a two-set lead when the two produced their most entertaining exchanges.
That included a dazzling Federer forehand from inches off the ground outside the tramlines that fund its way around the net post and had Kyrgios staring in awe.
“Definitely a bit of luck and good feet,” said Federer, adding it wasn’t a shot he expected to make. “I guess I deserve it because I went for it.”
It denied Kyrgios a game point, although the Aussie would hold to lead the third set 4-3. Federer gained the lone break of the set to inch ahead 6-5 and served out the match with a love game punctuated by an ace on match point.
The Swiss maestro will fight for a quarterfinal berth against another Australian, John Millman, who reached his first Grand Slam fourth round with a 6-4, 4-6, 6-1, 6-3 victory over Mikhail Kukushkin of Kazakhstan.
German veteran Philipp Kohlschreiber got the better of sensational young compatriot Alexander Zverev Saturday, sending the fourth-seed crashing out of the US Open 6-7 (1/7), 6-4, 6-1, 6-3.
Zverev, 21, leads the ATP tour with 45 match wins this season, lifting titles in Munich, Madrid and Washington and reaching finals in Miami and Rome.
But it was 34-year-old Kohlschreiber moving into the round of 16, where he’ll face either 13th-seeded Diego Schwartzman of Argentina or Japanese 21st seed Kei Nishikori, the runner-up in 2014.