US Open Lookahead: Djokovic continues pursuit of Grand Slam

NEW YORK (AP) — LOOKAHEAD TO SATURDAY

Men’s No. 1 Novak Djokovic continues his pursuit of the calendar Grand Slam when he faces Kei Nishikori. Djokovic has won all 23 matches he’s played at the four most important tournaments in tennis in 2021. That means he is five victories away from a perfect 28-0 mark that would make him the first man since Rod Laver in 1969 to win all four major tennis singles championships in one season. Djokovic is 17-2 against Nishikori, including 16 consecutive wins. Djokovic would become the first man since 1969 to win a calendar-year Grand Slam and break a tie with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal for most major titles among men if he wins the tournament. He tied them with 20 after winning this year’s Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon. Americans Reilly Opelka and Jack Sock also try and advance in the men’s draw. Women’s No. 1 Ash Barty tries to reach the quarterfinals for the first time in her U.S. Open career when she plays Shelby Rogers. Barty has a 5-0 career mark against Rogers, with four wins against her over a three-month span this year. Barty skipped the tournament last year, when it was played without fans.

SATURDAY’S FORECAST

Sunny. High of 81 degrees Fahrenheit (27 degrees Celsius)

FRIDAY’S WEATHER

Partly cloudy. High of 75 Fahrenheit (24 Celsius)

FRIDAY’S KEY RESULTS

Women’s Third Round: No. 5 Elina Svitolina beat No. 25 Daria Kasatkina 6-4, 6-2; No. 8 Barbora Krejcíkova beat Kamilla Rakhimova 6-4, 6-2; No. 9 Garbiñe Muguruza beat Victoria Azarenka 6-4, 6-2; No. 16 Angelique Kerber beat Sloane Stephens 5-7, 6-2, 6-3.

Men’s Third Round: No. 2 Daniil Medvedev beat Pablo Andujar 6-0, 6-4, 6-3; Carlos Alcaraz beat No. 3 Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 (2), 0-6, 7-6 (5) ; No. 24 Dan Evans beat Alexi Popyrin 4-6, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 (1).

STAT OF THE DAY

4 1/2 minutes – Minutes it took Stefanos Tsitsipas, accused of lollygagging during lengthy breaks in the action, to use the bathroom after he dropped the third set to Carlos Alcaraz.

QUOTE OF THE DAY

“It’s nice to be back in the second week of the U.S. Open after five years, because I said three years on court and my brother wrote me that it’s five years, not three years.” — Simona Halep, who survived an upset bid to advance, even with her math a bit off.

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