Pouille stuns Nadal at US Open
Rafael Nadal suffered a shock five-set loss to Lucas Pouille in the US Open fourth round on Sunday.
The Spaniard was forced into a battle at Arthur Ashe Stadium and gave up a break in the fifth set to lose 6-1 2-6 6-4 3-6 7-6 (8-6) in four hours, six minutes in New York.
Nadal had cruised into the last 16 without dropping a set, but that changed quickly against the French 24th seed.
He seemed to recover, with Pouille having played consecutive five-setters, only to give up a lead in the deciding set.
It means Nadal is still without a quarter-final appearance at a grand slam since the 2015 French Open, while Pouille faces Gael Monfils in the last eight.
Nadal struggled for consistency in the early stages, a double fault gifting Pouille two break points and the Frenchman converted.
In no time it was a double-break 5-1 lead, a superb backhand down the line had Nadal on the run before another stinging winner earned the break.
The momentum swung at the start of the second when Nadal broke immediately, before the Spaniard fought off four break points in a mammoth fifth game to keep the initiative.
Pouille was now on the back foot and Nadal converted a second set point in the eighth game.
The topsy-turvy nature of the match took another swing, though, as more Nadal errors saw his opponent break for an immediate lead that he would not relinquish through the third set.
The players traded breaks in the fourth before a powerful Nadal forehand down the line gave him a 5-3 lead, and this time he made his advantage count.
Nadal turned his momentum into a 3-1 lead to start the fifth, only to give that up in the eighth game, with Pouille winning a thrilling tie-break after coughing up a 6-3 lead.
Pouille bt Nadal  6-1 2-6 6-4 3-6 7-6 (8-6)
Pouille - 59/53
Nadal - 52/41
Pouille - 11
Nadal - 1
BREAK POINTS WON
Pouille - 5/14
Nadal - 5/11
FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Pouille - 46
Nadal - 59
PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Pouille - 66/58
Nadal - 72/49
Pouille - 156
Nadal - 156