2008 US Open – Nishikori knocks off Ferrer

In what has to be considered the biggest upset on the men’s side of the draw, 18-year old Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy student Kei Nishikori has defeated the #4 player in the world, David Ferrer, in the third round of the US Open. This is Kei’s first career US Open, and only the second Grand Slam he has ever played in.

Nishikori won the match 6-4, 6-4, 3-6, 2-6, 7-5. It seemed like every time Ferrer broke Kei in key spots, Kei was able to break back to get the match back on track. Kei is now the first Japanese male in the Open Era (since 1968) to reach the fourth round of the US Open, and is the second Japanese man to ever reach the fourth round of a Grand Slam. The last Japanese men to reach the Round of 16 here were Fumituru Nakano and Jiro Yamagishi in 1937. He is also the youngest male to get this far since Marat Safin in 1998, and the is youngest man to defeat a Top 4 seed here since 17-year-old Bjorn Borg defeated No. 3 seed Arthur Ashe in 1973 3rd round.

He will face fellow teenager Juan Martin Del Potro in the fourth round. This is the first time two teenagers are through to the fourth round since 2001 when Roddick and Tommy Robredo both made it. If Cilic upsets Djokovic, he would be the third teenager in, which would be the first time since 1989 (Agassi, Sampras, and Chang).

Nishikori has already won a title this year down in Delray Beach, where he beat James Blake in the finals. He is projected to rise to the top 85, and if he wins his next match it will be the top 65.

Here are some pictures of Kei Nishikori from this year’s US Open and for more pictures check out our Flickr page