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Karen Khachanov hits 13 aces on Wednesday and advances to the third round in Cincinnati.

Khachanov Battles Past Kyrgios In Cincy

Russian wins their first FedEx ATP Head2Head meeting

Russian Karen Khachanov gutted out a 6-7(3), 7-6(4), 6-2 win against Nick Kyrgios on Wednesday evening to reach the third round of the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati.

Khachanov served for the opening set and had a set point on Kyrgios' serve at 5-6, Ad Out. But Kyrgios erased it with a second-serve ace and hit two more aces to force a tie-break.

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The World No. 9 rebounded in the second-set tie-break, though, gaining a mini-break and serving out the set. In the third, Khachanov rolled, ending the match with four straight games.

"It was a really difficult match for me. I had to really work it out to get the win," Khachanov said.

The 2018 Rolex Paris Masters titlist is looking to reach back-to-back Masters 1000 semi-finals after making the last four at the Coupe Rogers in Montreal (l. to Medvedev) last week. The Russian will meet France's Lucas Pouille for a place in the quarter-finals on the line. Khachanov leads their FedEx ATP Head2Head series 2-1.

Pouille never faced a break point and beat #NextGenATP Canadian Denis Shapovalov 6-4, 6-4. The Frenchman, who made the Australian Open semi-finals in January, will try to reach his third tour-level quarter-final of the season (Stuttgart).

"Lucas played two good matches, I think he won two really tough matches," Khachanov said. "I will be ready for tomorrow."

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