By Ros Satar
- Dan Evans def. Lucas Pouille  6-4, 6-3, 6-7(4), 6-4
- Will face Roger Federer for the third time in a Slam
NEW YORK, USA – Dan Evans set up his third Slam clash with Roger Federer after getting past a faltering Lucas Pouille after Wednesday’s rain delays.
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Dan Evans def. Lucas Pouille  6-4, 6-3, 6-7(4), 6-4
British No. 2 Dan Evans has always had a couple of notable wins at the US Open, punching above his weight to knock out Kei Nishikori in 2013, and having eventual winner Stan Wawrinka on the ropes in 2016, and he scored a great win over the No. 25 seed Lucas Pouille whose patchy form came and went in the match.
Although Evans found himself pegged back after an early break, he kept his patience to break the Frenchman at the end of the set before his trademark tenacity came into its own, fending off three break points and finally grabbing the first set on his third set point.
Evans was the first to strike at the start of the second set as Pouille seemed to unravel more and more, with Evans keeping hold of the advantage to take the second set, although again was made to work for it.
It looked as though it was going to be a formality as he went up a break in the third, but his level tailed off as Pouille seemed to finally settle into his game, breaking Evans twice in succession but falling away again as he tried to serve for the set, squandering three set points in the process. Although it was a quick start for Evans, Pouille had one more flurry of resistance to throw at the Brit, as he took the third set on a tie-break.
Evans responded with an immediate break at the start of the fourth set, and although Pouille got the break back, Evans broke decisively at the tail end of the set, serving for a spot in the third round for the third time.
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Evans v Roger Federer  | Federer leads H2H 2-0
Somewhat bizarrely the pair have only ever met (at a tour-level) at Slams, first at Wimbledon in 2016 (R3) and then this year at the Australian Open in the second round. Since then, Evans has been able to see up close what Roger Federer’s training regime is like, having joined him for training block in Switzerland earlier this year.
‘Danny’ as Federer likes to call him (and quite honestly who would argue with ‘Rog’?!) pushed him a lot harder at the Australian Open this year, than in their first encounter, forcing the first two sets to tie-breaks. With Federer having had somewhat sluggish starts in his first two matches, dropping his first sets in both, Evans has to fancy his chances of at least grabbing a set this time around.
This has the makings of an entertaining game of chess on the court. Both have a lot of variety to their game, and if they are both on song, this might not be the cake-walk that many anticipated Federer’s draw looked like – that is not to say he is not the over-whelming favourite to advance – but he will probably have to work a little bit harder for it.
Prediction: Federer in four sets.
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