Benjamin Bonzi lacked almost nothing. A detail, perhaps an ounce of tension less on two crucial games at the end of the second and fourth sets, to send the match to a decisive round and, who knows, to further harm the seeded n°23 of the tournament, Nick Kyrgios, greatly relieved to finally come out in four sets (7-6, 6-4, 4-6, 6-4) and almost 3 hours of play.
Because on Wednesday, in a Louis Armstrong Stadium very offshore with tennis conventions, the last Wimbledon finalist was highly challenged by the 50th French world, who had before this match only three victories in sixteen matches against Top 30. Kyrgios was even downright jostled and dominated in the fourth set. Benjamin Bonzi broke first at 1-1, before immediately returning his serve on a floating backhand slice out.
But the Frenchman was then the best installed in the game at this time of the match. He would still get five new break points over the set, including three in a row at 4-4 (0-40). But as often during this meeting, Kyrgios, who was not always consistent, pulled three strokes of genius from the hat: a drop shot, a short cross forehand and an ace to preserve his face-off and survive in the set.
It is also thus, on extraordinary flashes, a dazzling long line passing and a blocked backhand return in the tie-break, that the Australian had pocketed the first set, before Bonzi “offered” him the second on three unforced errors at 5-4, when he was leading 40-15!
However, the French did not disarm. In the next two sets, Bonzi was still struggling, accepting the challenge of the backhand flat game, attacking a lot more and above all reading Kyrgios’ long devastating service much better (64% of first serves and 30 aces).
But once again, at 5-4 for the Australian in the fourth set, Bonzi, with his back to the wall, first unscrewed a volley of forehand, before Kyrgios mystified him with a lob and the Frenchman came out. in stride a forehand approach! 0-40, the luck had passed. Very close. But it was Kyrgios who spun in the third round of the US Open, equaling his best New York “perfs” in the process. The 25th in the world will be opposed to the American guest, JJ Wolf.