Nick Kyrgios hits a forehand against Hubert Hurkacz (not pictured) in quarterfinal play in the National Bank Open at IGA Stadium August 12, 2022. ― Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports via Reuters
Saturday, 13 Aug 2022 9:08 AM MYT
MONTREAL (Canada), Aug 13 ― Nick Kyrgios’s nine-match winning streak ended in the Canadian Masters semi-finals when eighth-seeded Pole Hubert Hurkacz blasted his way to a 7-6(4) 6-7(5) 6-1 victory yesterday.
Enjoying a superb run of form, the loss was Kyrgios’s first since falling to Novak Djokovic in the Wimbledon final.
Since then the 27-year-old has been on a roll, including a title at the Citi Open, before running into Hurkacz who improved his record to 2-0 against the Australian following a three sets win earlier this year in the Halle semi-finals.
“Nick has been playing really unbelievable throughout the past few months,” said Hurkacz. “Battling against him, it’s very challenging, but it’s also fun.
“He can make every single shot. He doesn’t really have that many weaknesses, if any. I was just trying to serve good and stay aggressive.”
Hurkacz will next face Norwegian fourth seed Caper Ruud who strolled into the last four by sweeping aside sixth-seeded hometown favourite Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-1 6-2.
Kyrgios shrugged off the end of his winning streak, saying in his usual blunt fashion that he could not care less and was more interested in getting home after the US Open to see his mother and father, who are not well.
“I honestly don’t care,” said the Australian, adding that he would head to Cincinnati as soon as possible where he will continue his build-up to the US Open. “I’ve been away from home, away from my mum, away from my dad.
“They’re not very well at the moment. So I don’t really care about ‘no winning streak’. I’ve got two more tournaments (Cincinnati and the US Open)left before I can go home.”
The two big servers pounded away at each other on Centre Court with Hurkacz blasting 20 aces and Kyrgios hitting back with 19 in a contest that produced two breaks, both going to the Pole in the final set.
What had been a tight contest suddenly turned in the third when Hurkacz, helped by a pair of Kyrgios double faults, secured the first break.
With the help of yet another Kyrgios double-fault Hurkacz broke the Australian again to go 5-1 up and held serve to book his place in the last four.
Later flag waving Canadian fans filled centre court in the hope of watching Auger-Aliassime make it to the weekend.
He got off to a positive start by breaking Ruud at the first opportunity but it was all disappointment from there as the misfiring native of Quebec committed far more unforced errors.
“It was one of those days where everything goes in one favour and luckily it was in my favour,” said Ruud. “I am sure Felix has played better than he has today.
“It is a pity because he is playing at home. Maybe that was a factor, you could be nervous, but I am not going to talk for Felix.” ― Reuters