NEW YORK • Nick Kyrgios stood amazed, his mouth agape and his eyes popped wide over a shot Roger Federer had just made in the third set of their US Open third-round match on Saturday.
The Australian had scooped a drop shot at a seemingly safe angle, but his opponent sprinted a few metres, before reaching down with the head of his racket practically scraping the surface of the court and tapping a forehand around the net post. The ball lifted less than a metre into the air and bounced past Kyrgios for a winner.
The moment of brilliance, one of the many dazzling shots Federer has made in his illustrious career, caused a sustained roar from the Arthur Ashe Stadium crowd, as the Swiss went on to win 6-4, 6-1, 7-5 to reach the last 16 to face another Australian, John Millman, today.
But perhaps no one appreciated the shot more than its victim.
"If anyone else is doing those shots against me, I'm probably not too happy," Kyrgios, 23, said. "But it's Roger, (so) I was pretty happy."
Federer, a 20-time Grand Slam winner, counted that shot as one of his best, while also citing:
•An overhead slam against Andy Roddick in Basel in 2002.
SELECTED DAY 6 RESULTS
MEN'S 3RD RD
Kei Nishikori (Jpn) bt Diego Schwartzman (Arg) 6-4 6-4 5-7 6-1, Philipp Kohlschreiber (Ger) bt Alexander Zverev (Ger) 6-7 (1-7) 6-4 6-1 6-3, Novak Djokovic (Srb) bt Richard Gasquet (Fra) 6-2 6-3 6-3.
WOMEN'S 3RD RD
Carla Suarez Navarro (Esp) bt Caroline Garcia (Fra) 5-7 6-4 7-6 (7-4), Maria Sharapova (Rus) bt Jelena Ostapenko (Lat) 6-3 6-2, Dominika Cibulkova (Svk) bt Angelique Kerber (Ger) 3-6 6-3 6-3, Aryna Sabalenka (Blr) bt Petra Kvitova (Cze) 7-5 6-1, Naomi Osaka (Jpn) bt Aliaksandra Sasnovich (BLR) 6-0 6-0, Marketa Vondrousova (Cze) bt Kiki Bertens (Ned) 7-6 (7-4) 2-6 7-6 (7-1).
•A flicked shot over Andre Agassi in Dubai in 2005.
•A between-the-legs winner against Novak Djokovic at the 2009 US Open.
It was slightly more routine for Wimbledon champion Djokovic, who beat Richard Gasquet 6-2, 6-3, 6-3 to book a clash with unseeded Joao Sousa of Portugal today.
Djokovic's fellow All England Club champion, No. 4 Angelique Kerber, followed No. 1 Simona Halep and No. 2 Caroline Wozniacki out to leave Sloane Stephens, No. 3 and defending champion, as the highest-ranked player left in the women's draw.
The German Kerber fell 3-6 6-3 6-3 to Slovakia's Dominika Cibulkova, while Czech fifth seed Petra Kvitova lost to Belarus' Aryna Sabalenka 7-5, 6-1.
AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, NYTIMES, REUTERS
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