US Open Day 9 Preview: Can Casper Ruud Blunt Matteo Berrettini? | ATP Tour

Kasper Ruud assumes Matteo Berretini as the US Open The quarterfinals kick off in New York on Tuesday, where the Norwegian is looking to maintain his fight for first place in the Pepperstone ATP rankings.

Nick Kyrgios and Karen Khachanov also meet in the last eight of the hard court Grand Slam. The Aussie is looking to reinforce his impressive fourth-round triumph against the 2021 champions Daniel Medvedev.

ATPTour.com looks ahead to Day 9 Quarterfinals in Flushing Meadows.

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[5] Kasper Ruud (NOR) vs. [13] Matteo Berretini (ITA)

Fifth seed Ruud is breaking new ground in New York, and in more ways than one.

The Norwegian has advanced to US Open Quarter-finals for the first time with a string of fighting performances over the past two weeks, while the 5th seed also knows that a win over 13th seed Berrettini on Tuesday will take him two spots to No. 2 in the Pepperstone ATP Live rankings.

The 23-year-old could become the new world No. 1 if he reaches the league game at Flushing Meadows but he is worried about the Berrettini threat. Ruud beat the Italian in three sets in Gstaad in July to clinch his ninth tour-level title and believes his ability to counter Berrettini’s massive serve will be key to his chances of renewed success in Tuesday’s quarters .

“When we played in Gstaad, the conditions were really fast, even though it was on clay, and there was a lot of bouncing,” said Ruud, who leads Berrettini 3-2 in the duo’s ATP Head2Head series. “So I stayed in most of the time and tried this strategy, which didn’t work the whole game, but I ended up winning some key moments with it.

“Let’s see. Of course, sometimes you have to guess correctly and try to figure out where he’s going.”

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Ruud’s best New York performance to date, a third-round appearance in 2020, was ended in straight sets by Berrettini. The Italian proved he can crack down with his win in the fourth round Alejandro Davidovich Fokina on Sunday, when he prevailed in five sets after three hours 45 minutes.

This victory bettered the 2019 semifinalist’s record at the US Open to 16-4, and he spoke afterwards about the importance of staying ahead against Ruud as he tries to avenge the defeat in Gstaad.

“I think the key is to be aggressive in front of him,” said Berrettini. “I’ll try to get him to walk and not run too much. I think the key is to be aggressive, use my weapons, serve and of course my forehand.”

The game is also important to both players’ hopes of qualifying for November Nitto ATP Finals. Ruud is currently fourth in the Pepperstone ATP Live Race To Turin while Berrettini is 13th.

[23] Nick Kyrgios (OFF) vs. [27] Karen Khachanov

Kyrgios and Khachanov’s only previous Grand Slam meeting was unforgettable. The Australian needed four hours and 26 minutes to defeat Khachanov in a remarkable 6-2, 7-6(5), 6-7(6), 6-7(7), 7-6(8) win at the 2020 to defeat Australian Open.

Despite the production of what he later dubbed “probably the dumbest game ever‘ versus Daniel Medvedev In the fourth round in New York on Sunday, Kyrgios delivered an otherwise brilliant performance Arthur Ashe Stadion to defeat world no. 1 and schedule a second meeting at the majors with 27th seed Khachanov.

Kyrgios has found his best level on the tour in recent months, going 19-3 on the North American hard courts after his run to a first Grand Slam final Wimbledon in July. The Aussie says he’s feeding on his strong result streak as he chases his first major title in New York.

“Of course winning helps. I won a lot this year,” said Kyrgios after his Medvedev victory. “The motivation was there. It’s easy to train. It’s obviously easier to wake up when things are going well. I was just sick of letting people down. I don’t know, just feel that way. I feel like I’m making people proud now.”

Like Kyrgios, world no. 31 Khachanov has reached the quarterfinals in New York for the first time. The 26-year-old persevered Pablo Carreno Busta in an epic in the fourth round on Sunday and hopes he’s turned the corner at Flushing Meadows, where he held a 5-6 tournament record ahead of this year’s tournament.

“To be honest, I had a really great game against Rafa in 2018 (a third-round duel in 2018) and good memories,” said Khachanov. “But after that not so good performances in New York, so I was a bit nervous this year because I wanted to do well and I feel like I’m playing good tennis.”

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