It would seem Nick Kyrgios is never not making headlines, but this time it’s in his favour having beat Novak Djokovic for the second time in a fortnight, setting him up for the quarter-final against Roger Federer in Indian Wells.
It was a sweet victory on Thursday, when Kyrgios defeated the world number two 6-4 7-6 (7-3) during which he struck 14 aces, which took him into the last eight of the Masters 1000 event for the first time in his young career.
“It feels good. I knew what I had to do today. It was always going to be tough; he is a great champion,” said Kyrgios, who is looking to be in champion form himself, having yet to drop a serve in three matches this week.
Djokovic, who has been on a 20-match winning streak, was clearly frustrated in the straight sets loss showing his agitation by destroying his racquet and evidently chiding himself throughout the match.
On Saturday the 15th seed will face Federer, who upstaged Nadal in just 67 minutes with a 6-2 6-3 result, but will no doubt have an edge of confidence given he came out on top in their first and only meeting in Madrid in 2015.
“Roger is one of my favourite players of all time,” Kyrgios said.
“(But) it’s just another match for me. I have to get ready for tomorrow.
“I am serving really well. That is creating chances for me to put pressure on their service games.
“My mentality is improving and I am trying really hard to fight for every point and just compete.”
Whoever emerges as the winner will play fourth seed Kei Nishikori or American Jack Sock.