Kyrgios Weathers Early Storm To Reach Tokyo Quarter-finals
On a rainy Thursday in Tokyo, Nick Kyrgios weathered another sort of storm under the closed roof in the Ariake Colosseum. After a shaky start to his second-round match, the Aussie locked in to secure a 3-6, 6-2, 6-2 victory against Poland's Kamil Majchrzak at the Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships.
Kyrgios grew frustrated as he played a loose opening service game in falling behind 0-3, and he could not create a break chance in the set. But after saving a break point in the opening game of set two, Kyrgios did not face another as he expertly turned the match around to advance to the quarter-finals.
"Losing the first set, there was never really a doubt in my mind that I was going to win the match," Kyrgios said, noting his 37 match wins on the season. "I just had to get back to doing what I do well — that's playing quick and aggressive tennis.
"I've got really good confidence in my game right now, so I don't really doubt myself even when I'm down a set. I think playing Grand Slams and going far in Grand Slams has given me that confidence that even if I lose a set I'm still able to maintain and increase my level in the match."
The fifth seed finished with 22 aces and won 84 per cent (36/43) of his first-serve points.
"I've been serving well all year," he said. "I know if I'm serving the way I can serve, I shouldn't be getting broken."
Kyrgios was pleased with his "really high level" in the final two sets, and will seek to continue that form in the quarter-finals against third seed Taylor Fritz.
"Fritz is obviously an incredible player. He's had a great year," Kyrgios said. "He plays very aggressive, has a great serve and is very dangerous off both wings."