Roger Federer (SUI) def Yoshihito Nishioka (JPN) | 62 62 64
Five time US Open Champion Roger Federer launched the night session with a straight sets win over Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka. The heat and humidity proved Roger’s greatest obstacle. On court after the win, Roger admitted that he was happy just to survive.
Earlier in the day – for the first time at a Major – Novak Djokovic and Marton Fucsovics were granted an “extreme heat” 10-minute break between sets 3 and 4. After struggling for most of the match, Novak earned victory with a 4th set shut-out.
Roger Federer. Still the Grand Slam 🐐 in the Men’s Game
With Federer’s win on Tuesday, he is now 18-0 in 1st-Round play at the US Open. Aside from Serena Williams (23 Major titles / 6 US Open victories), no other active player owns more Grand Slam Singles titles. Back in January, he started the 2018 season in Melbourne by capturing his 20th career Slam. He then regained the World #1 ranking for the first time in 5-years.
Speaking with his “Secret Weapon” Severin Luthi earlier this year at the Match for Africa, winning another Major and reaching the sport’s pinnacle weren’t even on the radar last Christmas. Now 37-years-old, 2018 has been unexpectedly tremendous, and a hell of a gift for Team Federer.
Roger’s Grand Slam statistics are mind blowing: 20 titles. 30 Finals. 337 match victories overall. Plus, he owns the Open Era record for consecutive Grand Slam Finals. Stretching from his win at the 2005 Wimbledon Championships to his victory at the 2007 US Open. He’s also the current record holder for consecutive Slam Semifinals (23) and Quarterfinals (36).
Meanwhile, Yoshihito Nishioka continues his comeback
For those who’ve ever shredded an ACL, Nishioka’s story is inspiring. Last year in Miami’s 2nd-Round, he was up a break on Jack Sock when he demolished his knee. It was a heart-breaking injury because Yoshihoto had just climbed to a career-high ranking of World #58.
But, sports medicine and rehabilitation have come a long way. Reminiscent of Bethanie Mattek-Sands’ story, Nishioka spent the rest of 2017 recovering from reconstructive surgery. Then in January, he returned to the game ranked outside the top-150. In just his second competitive match, he earned a deciding-set upset over World #28 Phillip Kohlschreiber to reach the 2nd-Round of the Australian Open.
The 22-year-old has spent a better part of the year battling through ATP Challenger events. Putting in the work to lift his ranking. In May – as a qualifier and World #362 – he captured his 5th Challenger title in Gimcheon, defeating Vasek Pospisil in the Final.
Tuesday night’s loss goes down as an “L,” but ask Nishioka – considering where he was this time last year – he’ll say it was an enormous “W.” Just to have a shot at one of the greatest to ever play the game. Don’t be surprised to see Yoshihito back in the top-100 by season’s end.
NEXT: Benoit Paire -56- (FRA)
In Round-2, the greatest of all time faces one of the greatest racquet smashers of all time – Benoit Paire. The Frenchman can be dangerous. Earlier this year, he upset 6-time champion Novak Djokovic in the 2nd-Round of the Miami Masters.
Federer and Paire have played seven times before. Paire has yet to win a match. They most recently met a few months back in Halle’s Round of 16. Interestingly enough, the match came down an extended deciding-set tiebreak: Federer won 63 36 76(7).
 Roger Federer -02- (SUI)
This 5-time US Open Champion is arguably the most gifted athlete in the history of the game. Earlier this year, he won his 20th career Grand Slam Singles title at the Australian Open, and regained the World #1 ranking. He has spent more time as the sport’s top-talent than any other player, with 310-weeks as the World #1 – that is just 2-weeks shy of 6-years as the #1 Player in the World. With 6 Australian Open titles, a French Open victory, 8 Wimbledon crowns, and US Open victories in 2004, 05, 06, 07, and 2008 – he is one of only 8 men in tennis history to own the career Grand Slam. He’s a Davis Cup Champion, an Olympic Gold Medalist, is the reigning Laver Cup Champion with Team Europe, and has captured the year-end ATP Finals a record 6-times in 10-Finals. With his wins this year in Rotterdam and Stuttgart, he now holds a remarkable 98 career ATP World Tour Singles titles. From Basel, Switzerland – A man who needs no introduction – 5-time US Open Champion, Roger Federer.
Yoshihito Nishioka -177- (JPN)
3-years-ago, at just 19-years-old, this southpaw won his first Grand Slam, main-draw match right here at the US Open, coming back from a 2-sets to 1 deficit to defeat Paul-Henri Matheiu. Last year, he reached a career-high ranking of World #58 – before injury sidelined him for the remainder of the season. Then in January – returning to the sport ranked outside the top-150 – he earned a deciding-set upset over World #28 Phillip Kohlschreiber to reach the 2nd-Round of the Australian Open. 4-months later, he won his 5th ATP Challenger Tour Singles title, advancing to the Final of the Gimcheon Challenger as a qualifier. Competing in his 4th US Open – from Japan, please welcome, Yoshihito Nishioka.