US Open Day 7: Osaka and Zverev power on, Djokovic shock

  • Piers Newbery

On a day when world No.1 Novak Djokovic's defaulting dominated US Open news, a host of contenders for the men's title emerged and Naomi Osaka confirmed her credentials in the women's draw.

American hopes were boosted by stunning performances from Jennifer Brady and Shelby Rogers as they took out Grand Slam champions Angelique Kerber and Petra Kvitova respectively to seal quarterfinal places.

And in the men's draw, fifth seed Alexander Zverev made smooth progress in the quarter now missing tournament favourite Djokovic.

NEWS: Top seed Djokovic defaulted

Dennis Shapovalov is the first Canadian man to reach the US Open singles quarterfinals
Dennis Shapovalov is the first Canadian man to reach the US Open singles quarterfinals

Shapovalov & Osaka light up the night

Canada's Shapovalov broke new ground with a spectacular night-session display against David Goffin that earned him a first Grand Slam quarterfinal spot.

The usual flamboyant shotmaking was backed up by big serving, and a grit and consistency, that left Goffin looking helpless after edging the opening set.

Shapovalov, the 12th seed, came through 6-7(0) 6-3 6-4 6-3 and goes on to face Spanish 20th seed Pablo Carreno Busta.

Former champion Osaka followed on Arthur Ashe Stadium, rounding off the night session with a confident display against Estonian 14th seed Anett Kontaveit. 

The Japanese fourth seed prevailed 6-3 6-4 and will next face American Shelby Rogers.

Djokovic absence opens up draw

Zverev needed just one hour and 34 minutes to see off Spain’s Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 6-2 6-2 6-1 to reach the last eight for the first time.

He will take a 1-3 head-to-head record into his quarterfinal against Borna Coric, a 7-5 6-1 6-3 winner over Jordan Thompson.

Carreno Busta now occupies the top slot in the draw following Djokovic’s default in their fourth-round match for hitting a linesperson with a ball.

The Spaniard, who had been about to serve for the first set against Djokovic, goes on to face 12th seed Shapovalov.

Asked about the prospect of a new men's Grand Slam champion now being guaranteed in New York, Zverev said: "Now I think is the time where it gets really interesting. I know who is where in the draw. I know who I can play. I know who the rest of the guys can play. Yeah. We'll see where we go from here."

Shelby Rogers
Shelby Rogers is through to the second Grand Slam quarterfinal of her career

US stars on the rise

Brady further enhanced her credentials with a convincing win over former champion Kerber, sweeping past the German 6-1 6-4 to reach her first Grand Slam quarterfinal.

The 28th seed broke serve four times and hit 25 winners to set up a last-eight clash with Yulia Putintseva, a three-set winner over eighth seed Petra Martic.

Rogers then followed up Brady’s performance with a tense win over sixth seed Kvitova.

The American saved four match points before clinching her first US Open quarterfinal place with a 7-6(5) 3-6 7-6(6) victory.

Quotes of the day

“This whole situation has left me really sad and empty. I checked on the lines person and the tournament told me that thank God she is feeling ok. I‘m extremely sorry to have caused her such stress. So unintended. So wrong.”
- Novak Djokovic

“I think that it was bad luck, no? You cannot do this, but of course I think that Novak never, never wants to hit the line umpire.”
- Pablo Carreno Busta

“I feel sorry for him. At the same time, you know, that's the rules. I think he needed to be defaulted. There is not much else to say. Again, I do feel sorry for him. He's my friend. Obviously I think nobody's happy that that happened.”
- Borna Coric

“I’ve been in that situation so I know exactly how Novak is feeling. Of course, he had no intentions to go after the lines woman. Thankfully she's okay. It could have ended up very, very bad. Luckily everybody is okay. Like I said, it's just super unfortunate for everybody.”
- Denis Shapovalov

"There's going to be a new Grand Slam champion. That's all I know right now. There's no past Grand Slam champions left in the draw. It's going to be one of the young guys, I think, if you count Dominic Thiem as a young guy, as well. He obviously has a chance to win, as well."
- Alexander Zverev

“Yeah, it feels amazing. Day 72 in the bubble (laughter). It's been a long time here in New York. I'm happy to be sticking around for some more.”
- Shelby Rogers

“No, I didn't go to anger management during quarantine (laughter).”
- Naomi Osaka

Stat of the day

Djokovic’s exit means that, for the first time since the 2004 French Open, a Grand Slam quarterfinal line-up will not include any of the ‘Big Three’ - Djokovic, Rafael Nadal or Roger Federer.