Clutch Kyrgios Dominates Tie-breaks In Comeback Mallorca Win
Nick Kyrgios broke a sweat but did not break serve in a Mallorca Championships win against Laslo Djere on Tuesday. The Aussie did his damage in a pair of tie-breaks to advance with a 5-7, 7-6(1), 7-6(1) result in Spain despite a strong serving performance from the Serbian.
It was a reversal of his semi-final defeat to eventual champion Hubert Hurkacz last week in Halle, where the Pole came from a set down by winning two tie-breaks to defeat Kyrgios without a break.
“I’ve played good tie-breaks in my career and I know that if I’m serving well I’ve got a good chance,” the Aussie said after his Mallorca win. “He was serving really, really well today and he played the big points really well. I’m just happy to win.”
Kyrgios fired 24 aces but faced eight break points, saving seven of them to stay within touching distance as he struggled to find peak form. The Aussie stayed locked in to erase all six break points he faced in the third set — three in each of his opening two service games — and won 23 of his last 24 points on serve to secure the victory.
The World No. 45 dominated both tie-breaks, racing to leads of 3/0 and 5/0 in the second and third sets, respectively.
“Laslo is a tough competitor,” Kyrgios said post-match. “We grew up together in juniors so I knew he was capable of playing some good tennis. I’m proud of myself for that [win].”
Looking to improve upon a pair of semi-final runs on the grass in Stuttgart and Halle, Kyrgios advances to play home favourite and fifth seed Roberto Bautista Agut in the second round.
“Another hard one,” Kyrgios previewed. “He’s a great player and he’s a great guy as well. He’s one of my mates on tour and he’s very nice to me.”
American Marcos Giron also won a third-set tie-break to advance on Tuesday in Mallorca, upsetting sixth seed Botic van de Zandschulp 7-6(6), 6-4, 7-6(2). Eighth seed Sebastian Baez was a 6-3, 6-4 winner against Jordan Thompson, while Daniel Altmaier downed Dusan Lajovic, 7-5, 7-6(2).
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