American Frances Tiafoe upsets Rafael Nadal in 4th round of US Open
The Associated Press – Posted on Wednesday, March 29, 2019 – 3:25 AM EST
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — In a scene reminiscent of a classic comedy movie, two men brawling over a woman are seen in a series of awkward shots on a court surrounded by spectators.
But the scene is a scene in the third round of the U.S. Open on Monday at the Forest Hills Stadium, when Frances Tiafoe’s aggressive and unexpected play on the court for her first three-set win at a Grand Slam was suddenly eclipsed by more-than-capable Rafael Nadal’s dominance.
“They’re both champions,” Nadal said with a smile. “This is so, so unfair.”
What happened in a second set that lasted two hours and 17 minutes is still a mystery, but Nadal was clearly on top from the start, serving at will and dominating the rallies. From then on, Tiafoe had a battle with Maria Sakkari on her heels.
The drama came to a head in the fourth set. Nadal fell to two sets to love after Tiafoe, the world No. 1 who grew up in Greece, came out swinging.
After Nadal won the first two games he took more than three hours to win the next two. Though he was only one set away from a third straight championship at Forest Hills, he finally pulled into contention in a tiebreaker.
Nadal closed out the match holding serve.
He said after the match that he wanted to give Tiafoe another chance at the U.S. Open for a second time, saying they had plenty of chances to play together at the start of the year. But the final match with No. 50 also was Nadal’s last match of the season, and he made it clear that he wasn’t looking for another chance.
“I didn’t want to hear her excuses. I didn’t want to hear her explanations. I don’t want to hear her excuses. I don’t feel like giving in,” Nadal said.
“The fact that I have to, I’m