Australia’s Nick Kyrgios, a 19-year-old ranked 144th in the world, took out Spanish world No. 1 Rafael Nadal 7-6 (7-5), 5-7, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3 in the round of 16 at Wimbledon on Tuesday.
Nadal arrived at Wimbledon determined to make the final after losing in the first round last year to Belgium’s Steve Darcis, who was then the world No. 135, and being knocked out of the tournament in the second round in 2012 by Czech Lukas Rosol, who was ranked 100th in the world.
“You’ve got to believe you can win the match from the very start. I’ve been playing really good tennis on the grass. I was a bit in the zone out there, I didn’t even notice the crowd that much. I was serving to a really good level and I played some extraordinary tennis,” Kyrgios said.
In other men’s action, Switzerland’s Roger Federer, the world No. 4, rolled over Spain’s Tommy Robredo, who is ranked 22nd in the world, 6-1, 6-4, 6-4 in the round of 16.
“I’m confident again and not fighting with any confidence issues, which is huge in sporting terms,” Federer, a seven-time Wimbledon champion who has won a record 17 Grand Slam titles, said.
The 32-year-old Federer won his first major title at Wimbledon in 2003, when he was 21.
The Swiss great, who has played in eight finals at the All England Club, won the men’s singles title in 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2012.
His only loss in a final at the All England Club came at the hands of Nadal in 2008, a meeting that many consider the greatest tennis match ever played.
“I’m happy I got through the first rounds here rather comfortably - I don’t think I’ve lost my serve yet and I’m returning well. I’m in command of the points. That’s where you need to be early on to then also be able to perform against the best players,” Federer said.
Federer’s opponent in the quarterfinals will be countryman Stanislas Wawrinka, the world No. 3, who defeated Spain’s Feliciano Lopez 7-6 (7-5), 7-6 (7-5), 6-3.
“I had my game plan. I was ready. I was focused on what I wanted to do: playing simple, playing really aggressive, trying to do a lot of serve and volley, trying to show him that I’m going to try. I’m going to accept that he’s going to make aces. I’m going to accept that he’s going a play well,” Wawrinka said.
On the women’s side, Germany’s Angelique Kerber, the No. 9 seed, defeated fifth-seeded Russian Maria Sharapova 7-6 (7-4), 4-6, 6-4 in the round of 16.
The 26-year-old Kerber needed two hours and 37 minutes to knock Sharapova, who many were picking to win the title, out of tournament.
Kerber played through seven match points to beat the 27-year-old Sharapova, who won Wimbledon in 2004.
The German’s opponent in the quarterfinals will be Canada’s Eugenie Bouchard, the No. 13 seed, who beat France’s Alize Cornet in the round of 16.
Sharapova made her exit from the All England Club barely two weeks after winning her second French Open title.