Rafael Nadal knocked out of Wimbledon

Last updated 09:23 02/07/2014
Sydney Morning Herald

Wimbledon wild-card 19-year-old Nick Kyrgios beats top seed Rafael Nadal in a sensational fourth round upset.

Kyrgios hits 'shot of the year'

Nick Kyrgios
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CHANGING FORMULA: Despite upsetting world No 1 Rafael Nadal on his way to the quarterfinals at Wimbledon, young Aussie tennis star Nick Kyrgios is set to split with Kiwi coach Simon Rea.
Rafael Nadal
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YOU CANNOT BE SERIOUS: Rafael Nadal on the way to defeat against Kyrgios.
Novak Djokovic
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Novak Djokovic of Serbia blows kisses to the fans as he celebrates winning the Wimbledon title after beating Roger Federer of Switzerland in the final.

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Australian teenager Nick Kyrgios has pulled off one of the biggest upsets in Wimbledon history, beating world No 1 Rafael Nadal in four sets to reach the quarterfinals.

The 19-year-old, the youngest man in the draw, turned a remarkable Wimbledon main draw debut into a spectacular one, defeating the Spaniard 7-6 (7-5) 5-7 7-6 (7-5) 6-3 in just under three hours on centre court early today.

The world No 144 would face Canadian eighth seed Milos Raonic on Thursday for a place in the semifinals.

''I was in a bit of a zone out there, it hasn't sunk in yet,'' Kyrgios said.

''I played some extraordinary tennis. I was struggling a little bit on return, but I worked my way into it and I got that break in the fourth set. I served at a really good level all throughout the match so I was really happy.''

Kyrgios became the first teenager to defeat a world No 1 at a grand slam since Nadal did it against Roger Federer at Roland Garros in 2005.

Far from overawed in the biggest occasion of his life, a free-swinging Kyrgios lapped it up, going toe-to-toe with the 14-times grand slam champion in an enthralling encounter.

His efforts earned high praise from tennis great John McEnroe who said the 19-year-old Australian could be "the next guy in the men's game".

"I couldn't believe he could keep that up all match," BBC reported McEnroe as saying.

"He had this feeling about him that he absolutely believed that he would win.

"He is acting to me like he can win the whole tournament. The last guy I saw like that was Boris Becker, a teenager who just believed he would beat everything that was put in his way."

He served brilliantly - blasting 37 aces - and reeled off a string of massive winners. He also mixed up his game cleverly.

Perhaps most surprisingly, after making a superb start Kyrgios was able to maintain his level through the match.

Any questions over how the Canberra teen would handle the occasion were answered quickly and emphatically as he put on a serving exhibition in the first set.

The Australian lost only four points on serve for the entire set, none behind his first serve, as he smashed down 13 aces.

But his performance was far from one-dimensional, matching it with Nadal in the longer rallies and putting pressure on the  Spaniard's serve.

He earned three break points let in the set, including a set point, but couldn't convert, however, started strongly in the tiebreaker, racing to a 4-0 lead.

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Nadal rallied, but Kyrgios held his nerve, serving an ace to take an unlikely one-set lead.

Early in the second set Kyrgios had the crowd in awe with an outrageous, through-the-legs drop shot while down 40-0 on Nadal's serve, accepting the applause with his arms stretched wide.

Serving to force a second set tie break, some careless errors gave Nadal a sniff and the Spaniard converted his second set point to break the Australian's serve for the first time.

The third set was another closely-fought affair, but just as the match looked to be swinging Nadal's way, Kyrgios again showed the nerve that has been a hallmark of his Wimbledon campaign.

He saved one set point before edging a tight tiebreak, needing just one set point to regain control of the match after a stunning cross-court return resulted in Nadal putting a backhand wide.

Nadal had lost the first set in his previous three matches and it seemed inevitable he would rally again in the fourth set.

However, it was Kyrgios who struck first, securing a break to go 3-2 up.

He showed no signs of giving up his lead, and when given the opportunity to serve for the match, he didn't drop a single point.

Kyrgios fittingly sealed the historic win with an ace, raising his arms in joy, looking with disbelief to his support box and  performing a dance.

''I didn't know what to do: I've just turned to everyone that's supported me my whole life. I didn't really know what that dance was.''

He was the first player ranked outside the top 100 to defeat a world No 1 at a grand slam since Andrei Olhovsky defeated Jim Courier at Wimbledon in 1992.

Kyrgios also became the youngest man to reach the last eight at Wimbledon since compatriot Bernard Tomic in 2011 and the first to reach the quarterfinals on debut since Florian Mayer a decade ago.

The loss was more of the same in recent years for Nadal, who owns 14 major singles titles, and has appeared in five finals at the All England Club, but last year lost in the first round to a man ranked 135. In 2012 he lost in the second round to the world No 100.


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