Wimbledon 2022: Tsitsipas and Kyrgios clash in blockbuster third round match

Men's second seed Rafael Nadal and women's world No 1 Iga Swiatek also in action on Saturday

Stefanos Tsitsipas is the higher ranked player but the Greek fourth seed has a losing record against Nick Kyrgios. Getty
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Court One will host the headline match on Day Six of the 2022 Wimbledon Championships when Stefanos Tsitsipas takes on Nick Kyrgios, with the winner likely to be the main obstacle in Rafael Nadal's path to the final.

Fourth seed Tsitsipas is the only other top-10 player left in Nadal's side of the draw, while fiery Australian Kyrgios is a match for anybody on his day, particularly on the grass.

Tsitsipas's confidence is sky-high after he clinched his first grass-court title in Mallorca last week and he now has an 8-2 record on the surface this season. However, the Greek world No 5 is facing a man he has beaten just once in four matches.

Kyrgios, who came out on top when the two players met in Halle last month, has been making waves at Wimbledon on and off the court.

His opening win over Britain's Paul Jubb was marred by his admission that he spat in the direction of fans, whom he accused of being disrespectful, and he also took aim at officials.

The 27-year-old, who was fined $10,000 over Tuesday's incidents, has also been in a testy mood in his post-match press conferences but he remains bullish.

"I just feel like I'm comfortable in my own skin," the 40th-ranked player said after his straight-sets win over Filip Krajinovic. "Some people love to just tear me down. It's just not possible anymore."

Tsitsipas, who reached the fourth round in 2018, said he was "thrilled" to be facing Kyrgios, who beat Nadal on his way to the quarter-finals in 2014.

"I respect him a lot, on the court, what he's trying to do," he said. "Although he has been a little controversial in the past, I think he's playing good tennis."

A win for Kyrgios on Saturday will give him a season-leading 10th victory on grass this summer.

Nadal finding his form

Rafael Nadal will aim to keep alive his calendar Grand Slam bid when he plays Lorenzo Sonego. AP

Second seed Nadal, chasing a calendar Grand Slam, is aware he has not yet hit the heights at the All England Club after two scrappy performances so far.

The Spaniard faces Italian 27th seed Lorenzo Sonego in the third and final match on Centre Court.

"I didn't play much on grass in three years," the 22-time major winner said following his four-set win against Ricardas Berankis. "It gives me the chance to keep going, so very happy for that.

"I need to improve. The fourth set was much better. I have to keep working, be humble, even when things are not going well."

Jenson Brooksby and Alex Molcan can make the last 16 for the first time when they face Cristian Garin and Taylor Fritz respectively.

Switaek aims to extend streak

Iga Swiatek takes on Alize Cornet in the third round. AFP

In the women's tournament, world No 1 Iga Swiatek aims for a 38th straight win against unseeded Alize Cornet after she was taken to three sets by Lesley Pattinama Kerkhove in the previous round.

The Polish top seed, asked if her winning streak gave her confidence, said it not enter her mind while she was playing matches.

"I'm just trying to figure out what to do better and how to kind of come back," she said. "So it doesn't really matter for me."

Fourth seed Paula Badosa takes on two-time former champion Petra Kvitova in one of the most eye-catching ties of round three.

British wild card Katie Boulter, who downed last year's beaten finalist Karolina Pliskova in the second round, plays France's Harmony Tan, who sent Serena Williams packing in her opener.

Updated: July 02, 2022, 6:34 AM
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