Published: Fri, September 07, 2018
Sport | By Patty Hardy

‘This Was Epic’: Twitter Hails Nadal vs Thiem Clash in US Open

‘This Was Epic’: Twitter Hails Nadal vs Thiem Clash in US Open

Nadal was completely dismantled by Thiem in the first set as the American crowd was shocked into silence in NY, the Austrian hitting vaporising forehands and backhands to wrap up the opener in just 24 minutes - tallying 13 winners, five aces and 24 points in total compared to just seven from the former.

The he hit the on button.

Georgian Basilashvili had won just a single game against Nadal in their only previous meeting at the French Open a year ago, but played superbly here to take a set before going down 6-3 6-3 6-7 (6/8) 6-4 after three hours and 18 minutes.

"Dominic is an exemplary player on the circuit, and when you get to 5-5 in the fifth set, the tie-break is really on the toss of a coin".

"A great battle", Nadal told ESPN.

"The conditions were tough, a lot of humidity".

Nadal has played a total of 15 hours, 54 minutes through five matches here.

"I'm sad for him because when this moment arrived, he did all the things well to win the match".

Rafael Nadal was delighted, relieved - and sorry - after winning one of the great US Open night-session matches against Dominic Thiem.

He was agonisingly close to getting there past year at the US Open, leading by two sets against Juan Martin del Potro in the round of 16 before the 2009 champion roared back to win.

He fell behind by a break in the third set before rebounding.

By this time, both players were drenched in sweat playing on a muggy 85-degree NY night.

Elsewhere, there was a big surprise in the opening match of the day when Sloane Stephens was beaten in straight-sets by Anastasija Sevastova. He was ready for battle.

New York, Sep 5 Spain's Rafael Nadal defeated Austria's Dominic Thiem in an epic five-set quarter-final at the US Open tennis tournament.

The third set was another grind. Nadal leads the series 7-3.

Thiem opened his tournament in NY by thrashing Sofia champion Mirza Basic 6-3 6-1 6-4. Early on, Nadal had no answer to Thiem's attack.

The Spaniard was able to bounce back and win the next two sets 6-4, 7-5, but not without a fight from Thiem. Instead, after a subdued celebration, he briskly walked to the other side of the net to console his vanquished rival and offer a word of encouragement in a friendly embrace.

Thiem blasted 13 winners, made only two unforced errors and allowed Nadal just seven points in winning an extraordinary opener. But Nadal, after letting the 25-second serve clock expire, rallied to win the point and hold for a 5-4 lead. He was visibly upset as Thiem won the game to force a tiebreak.

At this point, Thiem had to ask for a new pair of shoes and socks because his were waterlogged from sweating so much. The two had played 10 times, but all previous meetings came on the clay courts preferred by both.

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