160831-caroline-wozniacki
Getty Images

U.S. Open Day 3 live coverage

Leave a comment

NEW YORK (AP) The Latest on the U.S. Open (all times local):

11:50 p.m.

Rafael Nadal is the first match winner with the roof closed.

The fourth-seeded Spaniard defeated Andreas Seppi 6-0, 7-5, 6-1 to advance to the third round, where he will take on Andrey Kuznetsov of Russia.

Nadal’s victory came after the new, $150 million roof in Arthur Ashe Stadium was closed with the score 3-3 in the second set.

10:45 p.m.

The U.S. Open’s new $150 million retractable roof atop Arthur Ashe Stadium has been closed for the first time during a match.

The cover was shut because of rain that fell at 3-3 in the second set of Rafael Nadal’s second-round match against Andreas Seppi on Wednesday night.

It took about 5 minutes to close and play resumed.

After dealing with rain delays and postponed finals for years, the U.S. Tennis Association finally built a movable roof over its main stadium. It is available for this year’s tournament, which started Monday, but the first two days were dry.

The only use of the roof until Nadal’s match came when it was shut at the start of the tournament’s opening ceremony Monday night, then opened as Phil Collins sang “In the Air Tonight.”

9:20 p.m.

Madison Keys wrapped up her U.S. Open match much earlier this time.

After her first-round victory took nearly 2+ hours and ended close to 2 a.m., the eighth-seeded American routed 16-year-old Kayla Day 6-1, 6-1 in 48 minutes Wednesday.

Day, the youngest player in the draw, was playing in her first Grand Slam tournament. Ranked 374th, she got in as the winner of the USTA Girls’ 18s National Championships. In the first round, she was leading 6-2, 4-2 when her opponent, Madison Brengle, retired with an arm injury.

Keys had defeated another American, Alison Riske, 4-6, 7-6 (5), 6-2 in a match that started Monday night and ended Tuesday morning. She hasn’t lost before the third round at a major since the 2014 U.S. Open.

9:05 p.m.

Anastasija Sevastova says moments like her U.S. Open upset of Garbine Muguruza are why she came out of retirement.

Sevastova beat the French Open champ 7-5, 6-4 on Wednesday night at Arthur Ashe Stadium, the world’s largest tennis venue. In an on-court interview, the 26-year-old Latvian said she returned to tennis early last season for “Grand Slams, playing on the biggest stage.”

Sevastova stepped away for nearly two years because of a series of injuries, mostly to her back. She says: “It’s amazing – on Ashe, in night match. What’s going to be bigger?”

Up two breaks in the second set, Sevastova was serving for victory and had two match points. But Muguruza got both breaks back to put the pressure on. Sevastova then broke the third-seeded Spaniard’s serve to clinch the win. She acknowledged she was shaking at the end, adding: “I had to solve my head, my self, all the thoughts of what could be, what could not.”

9 p.m.

Garbine Muguruza has lost in the second round in back-to-back majors since winning the French Open title.

The third-seeded Spaniard was upset in straight sets Wednesday by Anastasija Sevastova, who returned to tennis last season after a nearly two-year retirement. The 48th-ranked Sevastova won 7-5, 6-4 to reach the third round at the U.S. Open for the first time.

Muguruza has never been past the second round at Flushing Meadows. The 22-year-old fell to 124th-ranked Jana Cepelova in the second round at Wimbledon after she beat Serena Williams in the French Open final for her first major title.

She needed three sets to win her first-round match Monday, when she struggled with her breathing. Down two breaks in the second set Wednesday, she saved two match points and rallied to get the set back on serve. Then she got broken to end the match.

The 26-year-old Sevastova, who reached the round of 16 at the 2011 Australian Open, retired in May 2013 because of a series of injuries, mostly to her back. She returned in January 2015.

She had been 0-2 against top-five opponents.

8:10 p.m.

American teen CiCi Bellis is sticking around a little longer at the U.S. Open this time.

The 17-year-old qualifier rallied to beat fellow American Shelby Rogers 2-6, 6-2, 6-2 in the second round Wednesday. Two years ago, Bellis became the darling of the tournament when she upset Australian Open runner-up Dominika Cibulkova in the first round, before losing in her next match.

The 23-year-old Rogers is ranked a career-best 49th. A surprise quarterfinalist at the French Open this year, she received treatment on her right arm during the second set Wednesday.

Rogers beat Bellis in three sets at a lower-level event in May.

7:50 p.m.

Marin Cilic, the 2014 U.S. Open champ, advanced to the third round.

The seventh-seeded Cilic needed just 1 hour, 40 minutes to beat Sergiy Stakhovsky 6-1, 6-2, 6-3 on Wednesday.

6:05 p.m.

Wimbledon runner-up Milos Raonic hit 15 double-faults and lost to 120th-ranked qualifier Ryan Harrison of the United States 6-7 (4), 7-5, 7-5, 6-1 in the U.S. Open’s second round.

The fifth-seeded Raonic was treated by a trainer for problems with his left wrist and left thigh during Wednesday’s match and generally looked weary as play went on.

For Harrison, a 24-year-old born in Louisiana and now based in Texas, this is his first trip to the third round at a Grand Slam tournament. He had been 0-6 in second-round matches.

Until Monday, he hadn’t won any main-draw match at any major since the 2013 French Open.

Harrison and his younger sibling Christian are the first pair of brothers to both qualify for the U.S. Open.

5:25 p.m.

Angelique Kerber had to work a bit harder in her second match, but she’s still through to the U.S. Open third round without dropping a set.

The Australian Open champ blew a 4-1 lead in the second set then had to save three set points before pulling out a 6-2, 7-6 (7) win in 92 minutes over Mirjana Lucic-Baroni on Wednesday.

In the first round, the second-seeded Kerber spent just 33 minutes on court, winning all seven games before her ill opponent retired.

Kerber, who lost to Serena Williams in the Wimbledon final, has a chance to overtake her for the No. 1 ranking depending on their results at Flushing Meadows.

The 57th-ranked Lucic-Baroni upset second-seeded Simona Halep in the third round in 2014.

4:30 p.m.

Johanna Konta has won a three-set match after collapsing to the court late in the second.

The 13th-seeded Konta advanced to the third round at the U.S. Open with a 6-2, 5-7, 6-2 victory in 2 hours, 33 minutes over Tsvetana Pironkova on Wednesday.

As medical staff attended to her, she told them her heart started racing and she felt as though she was in shock. Temperatures were in the mid-80s on Wednesday.

After several minutes, Konta was able to stand up and walk to her chair. She went back on court and double-faulted to give the second set to the 71st-ranked Pironkova, then was taken to the locker room before the start of the third.

4:15 p.m.

Two-time Wimbledon champ Petra Kvitova has always said she prefers the genteel calm of the All England Club to the bustle of New York City.

The U.S. Open remains the only major at which Kvitova has yet to reach at least the semifinals, but maybe she’s started to figure out her annual trip to the Big Apple: Just don’t practice.

See, the traffic and general frenzy of getting to Flushing Meadows on off days had proved to be more draining than useful to Kvitova. Last year, when she was recovering from mononucleosis, she started a new tradition of skipping practice.

It certainly seemed to work – she reached the quarterfinals here for the first time.

After a 7-6 (2), 6-2 second-round win over Cagla Buyukakcay on Wednesday, the 14th-seeded Kvitova explained: “For me, it’s really exhausting to still be in the car and it’s a lot of people here. You just practice, like, 45 minutes. I didn’t need any more anyway.”

So she stays in Manhattan, goes to get coffee, does a little shopping, puts in a bit of fitness work – and mostly rests up.

3:45 p.m.

Johanna Konta is back on court after collapsing during her U.S. Open second-round match.

The 13th-seeded Konta went down late in the second set Wednesday against Tsvetana Pironkova. As medical staff attended to her, she told them her heart started racing and she felt as though she was in shock. Temperatures were in the mid-80s on Wednesday.

After several minutes, Konta was able to stand up and walk to her chair. She went back on court and double-faulted to give the second set to Pironkova, then was taken to the locker room before the start of the third.

Konta won the first set 6-2 and was up a break in the second, which the 71st-ranked Pironkova went on to win 7-5.

3:30 p.m.

Playing an opponent also coming off a five-set match, American John Isner advanced in four sets in the second round of the U.S. Open.

The 20th-seeded Isner beat Steve Darcis 6-3, 6-4, 6-7 (10), 6-3 in 2 hours, 54 minutes Wednesday. Both rallied from two sets down in the first round: Isner spent 3 hours, 27 minutes on court Monday, while Darcis needed 4 hours, 11 minutes.

Isner had a chance to close out the victory in the third-set tiebreaker but wasted four match points.

The 106th-ranked Darcis also faced the extra fatigue of going through qualifying to make the main draw.

Isner improved to 9-0 in U.S. Open second-round matches. He had 38 aces Wednesday, when he received treatment on his right knee and for blisters on his foot.

3:05 p.m.

Two-time U.S. Open runner-up Caroline Wozniacki has defeated a top-10 opponent for the first time in nearly a year, bouncing back from a horrid start to beat 2004 champ Svetlana Kuznetsova.

The ninth-seeded Kuznetsova won the first four games of the match and was one point from going up 5-0. Then Wozniacki ran off seven straight games en route to a 6-4, 6-4 victory in the second round Wednesday.

Her ranking down to 74th after an ankle injury and on-court struggles, Wozniacki is unseeded at the U.S. Open for the first time since her debut in 2007. She had won two matches at the same tournament just once since early March.

It’s Wozniacki’s first trip to the third round at a major since Wimbledon last year.

1:30 p.m.

Novak Djokovic will move on to the third round of the U.S. Open after his opponent withdrew before their match because of injury.

The top-ranked Djokovic faced a potentially tricky second-round matchup Wednesday against Jiri Vesely, who defeated him in their only meeting last spring. But Vesely pulled out of the tournament with left forearm inflammation a couple of hours before their match would have started.

12:20 p.m.

The 2015 U.S. Open runner-up, Roberta Vinci, cruised into the third round for the sixth straight year.

The seventh-seeded Italian beat American Christina McHale 6-1, 6-3 on Wednesday. Vinci needed just 22 minutes to win the first set.

The 55th-ranked McHale was trying to reach the third round at the U.S. Open for the third time.

Vinci stunned Serena Williams in last year’s semifinals to thwart her bid for the first Grand Slam since 1988, then lost to countrywoman Flavia Pennetta in the final.

Andy Murray, Angelique Kerber out in 4th round of Australian Open

2017 Australian Open - Day 7
Leave a comment

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) There was some symmetry about the fourth-round exits of top-ranked Andy Murray and Angelique Kerber at the Australian Open.

Both had the top seeding for the first time at a Grand Slam tournament. Both went out on the same court and, at least on paper, the same day.

It was tough at the top on Sunday: Five-time finalist Murray lost 7-5, 5-7, 6-2, 6-4 to No. 50-ranked Mischa Zverev in the afternoon match on Rod Laver Arena, and defending women’s champion Kerber lost 6-3, 6-2 to CoCo Vandeweghe in an upset that finished at six minutes past midnight.

It was the first time since the French Open in 2010 that both top-seeded players went out in the same round. In the quarterfinals at Roland Garros that year, Roger Federer lost to Robin Soderling and Serena Williams lost to Sam Stosur.

Murray and Kerber didn’t make it to the second week.

Vandeweghe had never been past the third round at the season-opening Grand Slam, and lost in the first round here last year. But she pounded Kerber with a powerful forehand, clubbing 13 of her 30 winners from that wing.

Kerber saved a match point in the first round last year before winning her first major title, beating Serena Williams in the final. She replaced Williams atop the rankings after winning the U.S. Open.

Murray lost the final here to six-time champion Novak Djokovic last year, but finished 2016 at No. 1 after a strong finish to the season that included titles at Wimbledon, the Olympics and the ATP Finals.

He was undone by some old-school serve and volley from Zverev, who played the match of his life. He’ll now meet 17-time major winner Federer in the quarterfinals.

In between the upsets was pretty rocky, too. Federer was down 5-1 in the first set against Kei Nishikori but found a way to fend off the 2014 U.S. Open finalist, who was cramping and needed late treatment on his back, 6-7 (4), 6-4, 6-1, 4-6, 6-3.

It was his 200th career win over a top 10 player.

Federer was ecstatic. “It was about staying with him. … almost going down 6-0, I thought `It’s not going to get any worse from there,'” said Federer, on the comeback from six months on the sidelines to repair his injured left knee. “Huge win for me in my career.”

Murray was stunned.

“Right now I’m obviously very down because I wanted to go further in this event,” Murray said. “I’ve had tough losses in my career in the past. I’ve come back from them. This is a tough one.”

Murray’s exit follows the second-round departure of Djokovic, beaten in the second round by No. 117-ranked wild-card entry Denis Istomin.

It’s the first time since 2002 that the top two seeds in the men’s draw haven’t reached the Australian Open quarterfinals, and the first time at a Grand Slam since the French Open in 2004.

The absence of Djokovic and Murray certainly opens up it up for others.

U.S. Open champion Stan Wawrinka, who had his major breakthrough here in 2014, is a growing contender after beating Andreas Seppi 7-6 (2), 7-6 (4), 7-6 (4). He’ll play a quarterfinal against 2008 Australian Open finalist Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who beat Dan Evans 6-7 (4), 6-2, 6-4, 6-4.

In the bottom half of the draw, 14-time major winner Rafael Nadal is the only man still in contention who has won a Grand Slam title.

The top half of the women’s draw is open, too. Venus Williams returned to the quarterfinals for the ninth time with a 6-3, 7-5 win over No. 181-ranked Mona Barthel.

The seven-time major winner next plays No. 24-seeded Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, who beat No. 8 Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-3, 6-3.

French Open champion Garbine Muguruza beat Sorana Cirstea 6-2, 6-3 and will next play Vandeweghe – they’re both in the quarterfinals at Melbourne Park for the first time.

Kerber’s loss contined a poor run since she won the U.S. Open last September. She’s played seven tournaments without winning a title, only reached one final, and was 5-7 against top 50 players.

The bigger upset of the day, then, was produced by Zverev, the older and apparently lesser-talented brother of Alexander who had never gone past the third round of a major and was appearing at only his third Grand Slam in six years.

Zverev attacked Murray, unsettling his natural baseline game, and won 65 of 118 points at the net.

He made some stunning, lunging volleys on clutch points, but for him it was all a blur.

“It was like I was in a little coma, I just served and volleyed my way through,” Zverev said. “Honestly there were a few points where I don’t know how I pulled it off.”

Murray couldn’t do a lot to counter it.

“It’s the shots he was coming up with when he did come forward.” Murray said. “He came up with some great pickups, you know, reflex volleys especially at the end when it was tight.”

Murray had reached the quarterfinals or better on his previous seven trips to Australia but never won the title – losing finals in 2010 to Federer and in `11, `13, `15 and `16 to Djokovic.

He had not lost to a player ranked as lowly as Zverev at a major since his loss to No. 51 Juan Ignacio Chela here in 2006. It was also the earliest exit by a top-seeded player at the Australian Open since Lleyton Hewitt in 2003.

Murray out in 4th-round upset, Federer advances in Australia

2017 Australian Open - Day 7
Leave a comment

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) Andy Murray had already been upset by Mischa Zverev, undone by some old-school serve and volley, and Roger Federer was down 5-1 in the first set against Kei Nishikori.

As Sunday stretched from afternoon to evening, the second week of the Australian Open appeared set to take on a drastically different complexion than any in a decade.

Unlike newly-installed No. 1 Murray, though, the long-time top-ranked Federer found a way to fend off his fourth-round rival.

The sum result of back-to-back long matches on Rod Laver Arena was a quarterfinal pairing of 17th-seeded Federer against No. 50-ranked Zverev.

Five-time finalist Murray lost in a 7-5, 5-7, 6-2, 6-4 to Zverev, the older and apparently lesser-talented brother of Alexander who had never gone past the third round of a major and was appearing at only his third Grand Slam in six years.

Federer held off 2014 U.S. Open finalist Nishikori, who was cramping and needed late treatment on his back, 6-7 (4), 6-4, 6-1, 4-6, 6-3.

Murray’s exit follows the second-round departure of six-time defending champion Novak Djokovic, beaten in the second round by No. 117-ranked wild-card entry Denis Istomin.

It’s the first time since 2002 that the top two seeds haven’t reached the Australian Open quarterfinals, and the first time at a Grand Slam since the French Open in 2004.

“Right now I’m obviously very down because I wanted to go further in this event, and it wasn’t to be,” Murray said. “I’ve had tough losses in my career in the past. I’ve come back from them. This is a tough one. I’m sure I’ll come back OK.”

The absence of Djokovic and Murray from the quarterfinals – the first time since 2007 that at least one of them hasn’t reached the last eight at a major – opens up opportunities.

U.S. Open champion Stan Wawrinka, who had his major breakthrough here in 2014, is a growing contender after beating Andreas Seppi 7-6 (2), 7-6 (4), 7-6 (4). He’ll play a quarterfinal against 2008 Australian Open finalist Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who beat Dan Evans 6-7 (4), 6-2, 6-4, 6-4.

On the other half of the draw, 14-time major winner Rafael Nadal is the only man still in contention who has won a Grand Slam title.

Zverev attacked Murray, unsettling his natural baseline game, and won 65 of 118 points at the net.

He made some stunning, lunging volleys on clutch points, but for him it was all a blur.

“Honestly, I don’t know, it was like I was in a little coma, I just served and volleyed my way through,” Zverev said. “Honestly there were a few points where I don’t know how I pulled it off.”

Murray couldn’t do a lot to counter it.

“It’s the shots he was coming up with when he did come forward.” Murray said. “I mean, he came up with some great pickups, you know, reflex volleys especially at the end when it was tight.

“He served very well when he needed to … he deserved to win because he played great when he was down, and also in the important moments.”

Seven-time major winner Venus Williams returned to the quarterfinals for the ninth time with a 6-3, 7-5 win over No. 181-ranked Mona Barthel.

She will next play No. 24-seeded Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, who beat No. 8 Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-3, 6-3.

French Open champion Garbine Muguruza reached the quarterfinals in Australia for the first time, beating Sorana Cirstea 6-2, 6-3.

Murray had reached the quarterfinals or better on his previous seven trips to Melbourne Park – losing the finals in 2010 to Federer and in ’11, ’13, ’15 and ’16 to Djokovic.

He had not lost to a player ranked as lowly as Zverev at a major since his loss to No. 51 Juan Ignacio Chela here in 2006. It was also the earliest exit by a top-seeded player at the Australian Open since Lleyton Hewitt’s fourth-round departure in 2003.

The younger Zverev brother was in the crowd at Rod Laver, where the bulk of fans were pulling heavily for Murray as the fourth set began, shouting “Come on Andy!” after nearly every point.

Murray was agitated right from the start, hitting into the net early on and screaming loudly as glanced at his players’ box.

Serving at 4-3, Zverev hit two easy shots into the net, including a routine-looking overhead from Murray’s defensive lob, drawing gasps from the crowd.

But as he held on for what turned out to be the biggest win of the year, he gained support with daring play and frequent trips to the net.

After closing it out on his first match point, he walked calmly to the net and clasped his hands together in front of his chest, almost in relief.