October 1, 2022

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Hubert Hurkacz's Grand Slam Demons are back.  A four-set battle in the second round of the US Open

Hubert Hurkacz’s Grand Slam Demons are back. A four-set battle in the second round of the US Open

Hubert Hurkacz will not make a noticeable result at the 2022 US Open Grand Slam. In the second round on Thursday, the Polish tennis player had to acknowledge the superiority of lower-ranked Ilija Iwachka.

Rafai Smolensky

Hubert Hurkacz

PAP / Marcin Cholewiński / Pictured: Hubert Hurkacz

Hubert Hurkacz (ATP 10), the eighth seed, met on Thursday with Ilja Iwaszka (ATP 73), whom he already knows well. The guys have faced each other five times before at different levels of matches. They played in Rivals and the ATP Tour. Now it’s time to duel in a Grand Slam. The Belarusian enjoyed winning 6:4, 4:6, 7:6 (5), 6:3, thus even the balance of the competition with the pole at 3-3 and will play in the third round of the 2022 US Open.

The start of the meeting was even. Both tennis players were watching the site, and you had to wait until game six for the first break point. After the competitor’s mistake, a resident of Wroclaw developed it, but he was not given the opportunity to take advantage of this opportunity. The Belarusian played a great match in the net, then tied for 3.

Then Iwasca launched the attack. The player from Minsk managed to press the bounce. Send deep balls and take the lead in trades. A great backhand on the line gave him a break point. Then a representative of our eastern neighbors (officially playing under a neutral flag) did an excellent job, which ended with a forehand. The 4:3 hack became a reality and clearly gave the 28-year-old wings. The pole had to send a pair of aces to defend the serve in the ninth inning. However, the first group “Hubi” could not be saved. After switching sides, Iwaszka quickly developed three defining symbols and with the third finished the first.

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In the second match, the 25-year-old from Wroclaw himself was not surprised. After a very even start, he gained an advantage on the court. All that remains is to wait patiently for your opportunities. In the eighth inning, Hurkacz developed two break points. Iwaszka later defended himself with great service and a great counter. After changing sides, the Belarusian found himself in trouble again. The pole obviously sped up and won the set-piece. He did not miss this opportunity. He played a point perfectly and was equal in fencing.

After the second part of the meeting, the gentlemen went to the restroom. After the game resumed, Hurkacz made some minor mistakes that cost him the service. However, the pole did not collapse and soon found the right rhythm. From 1:3, he paid more returns and was better at exchanges. As a result, he managed to equalize after 3, after a great job that ended with a shot into the net.

At the end of the group I got nervous. In the eleventh game, Hurkacz managed to defend two break points with great difficulty. He could certainly talk about luck, because Iwasca had a ball on the racket worth breaking, but he sent a forehand in the car. There were also feelings in the tie breaker. Hurkacz had the small-break advantage twice, but lost the lead each time. At the age of five, the Belarusian forced his opponent into a foul and had the set ball. Then the gentlemen played an excellent point, but the pole invited to the net was passed on the line.

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Iwasca celebrated the win in the third set very emotionally. It obviously gave him wings and encouraged him to keep fighting. It was clear at the start of the fourth inning that, despite the hardships of the game, he was able to move around the field very well. Already in the second match, after a double fault from the Wroclaw player who cut off flights, he got two break points. In the second, Hurkacz sent the ball to the car and easily lost the serve. His opponent didn’t win the pass easily, but he deserved to advance to 3:0.

Despite the difficult situation, the Poles fought to the end. In the ninth inning, he developed two points to break the return, but missed both chances. First, the Belarusian player finished the ball with a forehand, and then Hurkacz returned the ball to the net. Three hours and 5 minutes later, Iwasca used the first match ball and finished the duel.

Hurkacz scored 13 aces, five double faults, 41 wins and 59 unforced errors. The Polish scored more points than his opponent (132-131), but it was Iwasca who got more balls (3-2). The Belarusian also sent 2 aces, made six double faults, finished 33 balls, and made 53 fouls.

Iwasca was a more active player on Thursday and deserved to qualify for the third round of the 2022 US Open, where his opponent will be talented Italian Lorenzo Mossetti (ATP 30). For Hurkacz, this year’s US International Championships is over. For the fifth time, the pole could not pass two rounds (in the 2019 season he was eliminated in the first stage). Thus, his best result in this year’s Grand Slam is the 1/8 final from Roland Garros.

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US OpenNew York (USA)
Grand Slam, Hard Court, $60.1 million prize pool
Thursday 1 September

Second round of singles:

Ilja Iwaszka – Hubert Hurkacz (Poland, 8) 6:4, 4:6, 7:6 (5), 6:3

Men’s Championship Program and Results

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