Within the bear-pit environment of Kyrgios’s favorite John Cain Enviornment, U.S. Open champion Thiem dragged himself off the canvas to safe an exhilarating 4-6, 4-6, 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 win over the Australian showman to succeed in the fourth spherical.
“That first match towards Nick right here on his favorite court docket with a tremendous crowd, there are simpler issues to do,” stated the Austrian third seed, who sealed the victory with an imposing backhand winner down the road.
“Certainly that is one of many hardest challenges in our sport.
“Tonight was epic and a great final match earlier than the lock-down, it is actually unhappy to say.”
A cluster of COVID-19 circumstances in Melbourne means there will likely be no extra crowds on the Australian Open for no less than 5 days however the house crowd acquired their cash’s price, if not the specified winner.
Thiem was shell-shocked for the primary two units, barely in a position to lay a glove on Kyrgios who channelled the group’s vitality to supply some electrifying tennis.
Whereas the stress within the stadium was relentless, it was additionally on a knife-edge exterior the world as police on horse-back dispersed a crowd of a number of hundred anti-lockdown demonstrators about an hour into the match.
Inside the world, Kyrgios stormed to a two-set lead with an impish underarm ace.
But from there Thiem dug in grimly, and stole the momentum from the Australian’s fingers by serving like a machine.
A annoyed Kyrgios smashed his racket into the court docket earlier than surrendering the third set with a bungled ‘tweener’.
All of the sudden it was the Australian’s again towards the wall as a resurgent Thiem started wielding his racket like a wand.
In a second of insanity, Kyrgios bungled one other ‘tweener’ quite than volley into an open court docket, squandering the possibility for a 5-4 lead within the fourth set.
Thiem made him pay with three booming returns to interrupt and on the change of ends an angst-filled Kyrgios fired a ball excessive into the terraces to lose an computerized level for a second code of conduct violation.
Moments later the match was stage, as Kyrgios fired large to concede the set.
Thiem bided his time earlier than breaking Kyrgios at 3-3 in a nerve-shredding decider.
“That is ridiculous,” Kyrgios stated, after watching one other Thiem winner sail previous him earlier than the Austrian knuckled all the way down to serve out the match.