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U.S. Open Day 5: Live Coverage

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Welcome to live coverage of day five of the U.S. Open. Here are the results so far:

4:25 p.m.

Novak Djokovic got another free pass at the U.S. Open, advancing when his third-round opponent, Mikhail Youzhny, stopped because of injury after only six games.

This came Friday, two days after the man defending champion Djokovic was supposed to play in the second round, Jiri Vesely, withdrew a couple of hours before that match because of inflammation in his left forearm.

Youzhny quit after only 31 minutes while trailing Djokovic 4-2. Earlier, Youzhny received treatment from a trainer for what appeared to be a back problem.

The No. 1-seeded Djokovic moved into the fourth round at Flushing Meadows for the 10th consecutive year.

4:10 p.m.

Marcos Baghdatis beat Ryan Harrison 6-3, 7-6 (4), 1-6, 6-1 to move into the round of 16 at the U.S. Open on Friday, ending the run of the American qualifier who had pulled off the one of the biggest upsets of the tournament.

Harrison had reached the third round of a Grand Slam for the first time when he defeated the No. 5 seed and Wimbledon runner-up Milos Raonic on Wednesday.

For the 44th-ranked Baghdatis, the victory ends a nine-match losing streak in Grand Slam third rounds. It’s his first appearance in a U.S. Open fourth round and the first fourth round at any major since 2009. He will play the winner of the match between 10th-seeded Gale Monfils and Nicolas Almagro.

3:25 p.m.

Eighth-seeded American Madison Keys rallied from down two breaks in the third set for another great escape at the U.S. Open.

Japanese teenager Naomi Osaka twice served for the match Friday, but Keys got the break both times and went on to win in a third-set tiebreaker 7-5, 4-6, 7-6 (3).

The 18-year-old Osaka was wiping away tears on court after she lost her fourth straight game to allow Keys to even the third set at 5-5.

In the first round against 60th-ranked Alison Riske, Keys came back from down a set and a break to win in 2 hours, 26 minutes. Riske had two points on her serve at 5-4 in a second-set tiebreaker to try to close out the match.

The 81st-ranked Osaka was playing in just her third Grand Slam tournament and first U.S. Open, but she made it to the third round at both the Australian and French Opens this year.

Asked on court if this was the best comeback of her career, Keys said: “For sure. Hands down.”

3:15 p.m.

American Jack Sock eliminated 2014 U.S. Open champion Marin Cilic to reach the fourth round at Flushing Meadows for the first time.

The 26th-seeded Sock won 6-4, 6-3, 6-3 on Friday, taking all 14 of his service games and never facing so much as one break point. And he handled the Croatian’s big serve just fine, breaking the No. 7-seeded Cilic on four occasions.

The 23-year-old Sock’s only previous trip to the second week of a Grand Slam tournament came when he got to the fourth round of the 2015 French Open.
Sock is now 2-0 against Cilic, having come back from two sets down to win their Davis Cup match this year.

2:30 p.m.

Ninth-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga is the first men’s player into the round of 16 at this year’s U.S. Open.

Tsonga beat 23rd-seeded Kevin Anderson – a surprise quarterfinalist in 2015 – 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 (4) on Friday. Each player had 13 aces, but Tsonga managed to break Anderson’s serve twice while saving all seven break points he faced.

Anderson upset Andy Murray in the fourth round last year at Flushing Meadows, but he’s struggled with injuries this season.

The U.S. Open is the only major at which Tsonga has not reached the semifinals. He was the 2008 Australian Open runner-up.

1:20 p.m.

Roberta Vinci, last year’s U.S. Open runner-up, didn’t drop a game in the first set, failed to serve out the match in the second, then hung on in the third to keep another run at Flushing Meadows going.

The seventh-seeded Italian needed nearly two hours to top 102nd-ranked Carina Witthoeft 6-0, 5-7, 6-3 in the third round Friday. This is the fourth time Vinci has reached the round of 16 at the U.S. Open – she’s done it just three times combined at the other majors.

And last year, she stunned Serena Williams in the semis to thwart her Grand Slam bid. It was Vinci’s first major final at age 32.

The 21-year-old Witthoeft, who’s been ranked as high as 49th, was looking to make her first Grand Slam round of 16. She’s now 0-5 against top-10 opponents.

Vinci was two points from victory while serving at 5-4 in the second set, but Witthoeft broke back, part of a run of four straight games to even the match. Vinci went up a break to start the third only for Witthoeft to later get the set back on serve. Then Vinci won the last three games to move on.

1 p.m.

Two-time U.S. Open runner-up Caroline Wozniacki has reached her first Grand Slam round of 16 since 2015 Wimbledon.

Her ranking down to No. 74 after an ankle injury and on-court struggles, Wozniacki beat Monica Niculescu 6-3, 6-1 on Friday. It’s the first time since January she’s won three matches at the same tournament.

Against the 58th-ranked Niculescu, who presents an unusual style with a forehand slice, Wozniacki played more aggressively than her normalyeefensive game. Wozniacki is now 7-0 against the Romanian, who was trying to equal her best performance at a major by reaching the round of 16.

12:35 p.m.

Anastasija Sevastova has followed up her upset of Garbine Muguruza by equaling her best performance at a Grand Slam.

About 38 hours after she stunned the French Open champ, the 48th-ranked Sevastova swept past No. 59 Kateryna Bondarenko 6-4, 6-1 on Friday to reach the round of 16 at the U.S. Open. The Latvian also made it that far at the 2011 Australian Open, but in May 2013, she retired after a series of injuries.

Sevastova returned to tennis at the start of last season, and at this year’s Australian Open, she played her first major since 2011. She reached the second round at Melbourne and Roland Garros then lost her first match at Wimbledon as she steadily climbed back up the rankings.

Bondarenko was a U.S. Open quarterfinalist in 2009 but hasn’t been past the third round at a Grand Slam since.

11 a.m.

Three past champions are on the U.S. Open lineup Friday, with Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Marin Cilic all seeking to move on to the round of 16.

The No. 1-ranked Djokovic, who experienced problems with his right arm in the first round and didn’t have to play in the second when his opponent withdrew with an injury, takes on 61st-ranked Mikhail Youzhny in Arthur Ashe Stadium.

No. 4-seeded Nadal faces Youzhny’s doubles partner, Andrey Kuznetsov, on Ashe at night, while No. 7 Cilic plays No. 26 Jack Sock of the United States in Louis Armstrong Stadium.

On the women’s side in Ashe, second-seeded Angelique Kerber, the Australian Open champ, faces 17-year-old American qualifier CiCi Bellis. And former No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki – down to No. 74 in the rankings thanks to injury issues and early exits at tournaments – takes on No. 58 Monica Niculescu.

Weather should not be a factor, with sunny skies and temperatures in the high 70s and low 80s.

Serena Williams returning to competition for US Fed Cup team

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WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (AP) The U.S. Tennis Association says Serena Williams will return to competition for the first time in more than a year at the country’s Fed Cup matches against the Netherlands next month.

Williams has not played an official match since winning the Australian Open in January 2017 for her 23rd Grand Slam singles title. She was pregnant during that tournament and gave birth to a daughter on Sept. 1.

Joining Williams on U.S. captain Kathy Rinaldi’s roster announced Tuesday is older sister Venus, a seven-time major champion. The siblings have not played on the Fed Cup team together in three years.

Also on the team: CoCo Vandeweghe, a semifinalist at the Australian Open and U.S. Open last year. A fourth member of the U.S. squad will be announced next week.

The U.S. won last year’s Fed Cup.

The matches against the Netherlands will be held on an indoor hard court in Ashville, North Carolina, on Feb. 10-11.

More AP tennis coverage: https://apnews.com/tag/apf-Tennis

Injured Nadal out of Australian Open; Cilic into semifinals

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MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) An injured and visibly struggling Rafael Nadal retired while trailing in the fifth set of his Australian Open quarterfinal match against Marin Cilic.

Top-ranked Nadal fended off five break points in the last game before Cilic broke his serve, then the 16-time major winner went to shake hands with the umpire and his opponent, and angrily hurled his headband into his equipment bag.

No. 6-seeded Cilic advanced to his first semifinal in Australia since 2010 with a score of 3-6, 6-3, 6-7 (5), 6-2, 2-0, retired.

Cilic, the 2014 U.S. Open champion, will next play No. 49-ranked Kyle Edmund, who beat No. 3-ranked Grigor Dimitrov 6-4, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 to reach a Grand Slam semifinal for the first time.

Nadal limped into a news conference about a half-hour later, still wincing when he stepped up onto a platform. He said he felt muscle pain in his upper right leg in the third set but played through it. In the fourth set, chasing a drop shot, he felt the pain get worse “but didn’t realize how bad.”

“Tough moments -not (for) the first time here,” he said. “I’m a positive person, but today is an opportunity lost to be in a semifinal for a Grand Slam and fight for an important title for me.

“It’s really tough to accept.”

Nadal said he’d have medical scans Wednesday to determine the exact location and extent of the injury, which he could only describe as being high on his right leg but not in the hip.

“Unbelievable performance from both of us and really unfortunate for Rafa,” Cilic said. “He’s such an unbelievable competitor. He always gives his best … it’s very unfortunate for him to finish this way.”

It was only the second time Nadal had retired during a Grand Slam match – the last time was also an Australian Open quarterfinal, in 2010 against Andy Murray.

On Tuesday night, he needed a medical timeout after going down 4-1 in the fourth set for treatment on his leg.

Nadal returned but was clearly bothered by the injury, limping and taking as much time as possible as he tried to stretch between points.

He called the trainer again after losing the fourth set, and lasted only two further games.

Cilic had only previously beaten Nadal once in their six previous matches – in their first match at Beijing in 2009.

Nadal had a delayed start to the season because of an injured right knee, but appeared to be in good form through the first four rounds. He now hasn’t won back-to-back Australian Open quarterfinals since 2008 and ’09, the year he won his only Australian title.

“I worked hard to be here,” said Nadal, who skipped tournaments in Abu Dhabi and Brisbane, Australia, while his knee recovered at the start of the season. “We did all the things that we believed were the right things to do.”

His absence also means there’s only one of last year’s singles finalists remaining in the tournament. Roger Federer, who beat Nadal in five sets last year, is playing Tomas Berdych in a quarterfinal on Wednesday.

Serena Williams didn’t defend her title, deciding she hadn’t had enough time to prepare following the birth of her first child last September. Her older sister, Venus Williams, was beaten in the first round.

On top of that, six-time champion Novak Djokovic was upset in the fourth round.

There’ll be a British man in the Australian Open semifinals for the seventh time in nine years, but it won’t be five-time finalist Murray – who skipped the season-opening tournament to have surgery on his hip.

Edmund had never played in a major quarterfinal, had never won five consecutive matches at tour level, had lost both of his previous matches against Dimitrov and had never beaten a top five player.

He checked all those boxes on Rod Laver Arena.

“I am loving it right now, just the way I’m playing,” Edmund said. “My first Grand Slam semifinal. First time I played on one of the biggest courts in the world. To beat a quality of player like Grigor. They’re great feelings. So, yeah, I just try to enjoy it as much as possible.”

After breaking Dimitrov’s serve in the ninth game of the fourth set, Edmund set up match point with an ace. Then he had to wait before a video challenge confirmed that Dimitrov’s last shot – a floating backhand – was out.

“I just held my nerve in that last game and prayed that last ball would be out,” Edmund said. It was out. And so was Dimitrov, who lost a five-set semifinal here last year to Nadal.

“Everything went his way today,” Dimitrov said. “It’s hard to hide a disappointment. It hurts, and so it should.”

Edmund, who had a first-round upset over U.S. Open finalist Kevin Anderson, is now the center of attention for the tennis-loving British public.

“I know what it feels like to be Andy Murray the last eight years,” he said. “It’s probably the first time I’ve done well on my own, so there’s more attention there. Of course you take it in stride.”

Elise Mertens is facing a similar experience.

Mertens upset fourth-seeded Elina Svitolina 6-4, 6-0 to extend her winning streak to 10 matches, becoming the first Belgian since Kim Clijsters in 2012 to reach the semifinals here.

Mertens, who trains at Clijsters’ academy, said: “Kim, thanks for watching. I’m trying to be in your footsteps this week.”

In the semis, she’ll play either second-seeded Caroline Wozniacki or Carla Suarez Navarro.