American Taylor Fritz Earns First Major Quarterfinal At Wimbledon, Nick Kyrgios Moves Into Final 8

Taylor Fritz is into his first major quarterfinal ever and Nick Kyrgios is back in the Wimbledon quarters for the first time in eight years.

No. 11 Fritz, the 6-foot-5 California native, easily handled Australian qualifier Jason Kubler 6-3, 6-1, 6-4 to reach the first Grand Slam quarterfinal of his career. He has yet to drop a set in London and has won his last eight matches after winning the Wimbledon warm-up at Eastbourne.

He awaits the winner of the later match between No. 2 Rafael Nadal and No. 21 Botic Van de Zandschulp. Nadal entered having won 17 straight major matches this year en route to the first two legs of the calendar Grand Slam.

Fritz is the last American man standing after eight reached the third round and four were into the fourth round.

No. 23 Frances Tiafoe and No. 30 Tommy Paul both lost on Sunday, leaving Fritz and unseeded Brandon Nakashima to play on July 4th.

Nakashima battled Kyrgios through five tough sets before succumbing 4-6, 6-4, 7-6(2), 3-6, 6-2.

Kyrgios is back into the Wimbledon quarters for the first time since 2014 and his first major quarterfinal since 2015. He will next face Cristian Garin of Chile, who came from two sets down and saved two match points to beat Alex De Minaur, 2-6, 5-7, 7-6(3), 6-4, 7-6(10-6).

Garin has taken advantage of his draw after his first-round opponent, last year’s runner up Matteo Berrettini, had to withdraw due to Covid-19.

Kyrgios, meantime, backed up his electric, entertaining and controversial four-set win on Saturday over No. 4 Stefanos Tsitsipas with a solid performance against the 20-year-old Nakashima.

He was more or less on good behavior against Nakashima although he did appear to yell “You’re done” after one shot, which caused Patrick McEnroe on air to quip that he couldn’t have imagined his brother John or Bjorn Borg ever doing that during their epic Wimbledon finals of the early 1980s.

Kyrgios banged out 35 aces against only three double-faults and hit 137-mph on his serve.

“First, I want to say helluva an effort by Brandon,” Kyrgios said. “He’s a helluva player, he’s 20 years old and he’s going to do some special things, that’s for sure.

“I wasn’t anywhere near my best performance level-wise, but I’m just super happy to get through. I fought really hard today. The crowd was amazing. It was special stepping out here once again.”

Kyrgios also battled through a sore shoulder and will now have another day to rest before the quarters on Wednesday.

“I’ve played a lot of tennis in the last month and a half and I’m just proud of the way I steadied the ship,” he said. “He came firing in the fourth set, his level didn’t drop.

“My five-set record’s pretty good. Honestly, that’s what I was thinking about, I’ve never lost a five-set match here so that’s what I was thinking about. I’ve been here before, I’ve done it before and I came through.”

Kyrgios said he expected to play his countryman De Minaur in the quarters because when he came on court, De Minaur was up two sets to love.

Instead he will get Garin and he will be the favorite, with a spot in the semifinals possibly against Nadal on the line.

“I need a glass of wine for sure tonight,” Kyrgios said.