Australian tennis star Nick Kyrgios showed his respect for former world No. 5 Kevin Anderson following their clash at the Atlanta Open. Kyrgios, ranked at No. 58 in the world, beat recent Newport champion Anderson 7-6 (4) 6-3 to reach the Atlanta round-of-16.
“Kevin is no easy opponent, he’s a finalist at Grand Slams and he knows how to win matches,” Kyrgios said in an on-court interview. “His serve is one of the best in the world, so I knew today was going to be incredibly tough.
I haven’t played too many matches, but I was serving well and I just love playing here in Atlanta”. At match pointt, Kyrgios walked over to a fan and asked him where to serve. “It’s a routine that I’ve been doing for the last few years, just trying to get the fans involved,” Kyrgios explained.
“I saw that he had an ‘NK Nation’ hat on, and I said, ‘Where do you want me to serve?’ He just said, ‘Just go big, wide.’ So there you go”.
Kyrgios escaped with a straight-set win
Kyrgios had a chance to start the match with a break but Anderson saved two break points in the opening game.
As not a single break point was seen in the rest of the set, the set had to resolved in a tie-break. Anderson won the opening two points of the tie-break but Kyrgios responded with four consecutive points won on his own.
A few points later, Kyrgios realized his second set point to win a tight opener. The first break point of the second set was seen in the eighth game, when Kyrgios claimed the first break of the match to take a 5-3 lead.
After claiming the first break of the match, Kyrgios routinely served out for the match in the following game. Kyrgios will be battling last week's Los Cabos champion Cameron Norrie for a place in the Atlanta quarterfinal.