Clutch Kyrgios dominates tie-breaks in Mallorca comeback win | TSWT


Nick Kyrgios sweated but didn’t break serve in a Mallorca Championship win over Laslo Djere on Tuesday. The Aussie did his damage in a pair of tiebreakers to qualify with a 5-7, 7-6(1), 7-6(1) result in Spain despite a solid serving performance from the Serb.

It was a reversal from his semi-final loss to eventual champion Hubert Hurkacz last week in Halle, where the Pole came back from a set down winning two tie-breaks to defeat Kyrgios uninterrupted.

“I’ve played some good tie-breakers in my career and I know if I serve well I have a good chance,” the Australian 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 have won.”

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Kyrgios fired 24 aces but faced eight break points, saving seven to stay within range as he struggled to find his peak form. The Aussie stayed locked in to erase the six break points he faced in the third set – three in each of his first two service games – and won 23 of his last 24 serve points to secure victory.

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The world No. 45 dominated both tie-breaks, leading 3/0 and 5/0 in the second and third sets respectively.

“Laslo is a tough competitor,” Kyrgios said after the game. “We grew up together as juniors so I knew he was capable of playing good tennis. I’m proud of myself for that. [win].”

Seeking to improve on a pair of semi-finals on grass in Stuttgart and Halle, Kyrgios advances to face home favorite and fifth seed Roberto Bautista Agut in the second round.

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“Another tough guy,” warned Kyrgios. “He’s a great player and he’s also a great guy. He’s one of my buddies on tour and he’s very nice to me.”

American Marcos Giron also won a third-set tie-break to advance to Mallorca on Tuesday, upsetting sixth seed Botic van de Zandschulp 7-6(6), 6-4, 7-6(2). Eighth seed Sebastian Baez won 6-3, 6-4 over Jordan Thompson, while Daniel Altmaier beat Dusan Lajovic, 7-5, 7-6(2).

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