Djokovic charged past Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-1 7-5 6-4 to set up
a blockbuster meeting with longtime rival Andy Murray, who booked
his own place in the last eight with a steamy 7-5 7-5 6-4 win over
ninth seeded Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
Williams warmed up for her match in the mid-day sun sporting a black
dinner jacket over her pink leopard print dress and then turned back
the frustrations of a disappointing season at the majors by
hammering Estonia's Kaia Kanepi 6-3 6-3.
Gunning for her third consecutive U.S. Open title, Williams made
something of a grand slam breakthrough for 2014 by reaching the last
"I finally made a quarter-final this year!" she shouted to the
Arthur Ashe Stadium crowd with arms upraised. "Glad to do it in New
Swiss third seed Stan Wawrinka, 10th seed Kei Nishikori and twice
Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka avoided the worst of the
heat by playing under the evening floodlights but they were still
made to sweat for their wins.
No one work harder, or longer, for their victory than Japan's
Nishikori, who needed five sets and four hours and 19 minutes to
tame fifth seeded Canadian Milos Raonic 4-6 7-6 (4) 6-7 (6) 7-5 6-4.
The marathon contest equaled the latest finishing match ever played
at the U.S. Open with the two exhausted players walking off the
Arthur Ashe Stadium court at 02:26 AM local time.
With on-court temperatures hovering near 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38
Celsius), it was another day of survival of the fittest at Flushing
Meadows and seventh seed Bouchard was simply not up to the
The 20-year-old Canadian's bid for a fourth consecutive grand slam
semi-final appearance came to a distressing end with a 7-6 (2) 6-4
loss to Russian Ekaterina Makarova.
A tense 50-minute opening set played out under the baking sun went
to a tie-break and appeared to drain Bouchard.
On serve 3-2 in the second, she called for a medical time out and
trainers rushed on to the Louis Armstrong court to rub her arms and
legs with bags of ice while checking her blood pressure.
For a moment it seemed Bouchard would not be able to continue as she
covered her face and wept.
"I never want to retire from matches no matter what, I was going to
play on for sure," said Bouchard.
[to top of second column]
"I was feeling very light headed and dizzy on the court. You know,
just seeing things a little blurry."
After regaining her composure, Bouchard gathered her resolve and returned
to action but was quickly broken.
The battling Canadian refused to throw in the towel and immediately
Makarova, however, stepped up the pressure and in the end Bouchard
simply ran out of steam, the 17th seed breaking her again at 5-4 and
ending the ordeal with a sizzling winner.
Makarova will next face 16th seed Azarenka, who overcame an inspired
challenge from qualifier Aleksandra Krunic 4-6 6-4 6-4 to end the
diminutive Serb's magical run to the fourth round.
Next up for Williams is Italian 11th seed Flavia Pennetta, a
semi-finalist last year, who advanced with a 7-5 6-2 win against
29th-seeded Australian Casey Dellacqua.
World number ones Williams and Djokovic have moved imperiously through
their draws without dropping a set but the Serb, a U.S. Open finalist
for the last four years, will be wary of his upcoming showdown with
Though Murray is seeded eighth after a sub-par season following last
year's back surgery, the Scotsman is approaching top form and has some
positive memories of playing Wimbledon champion Djokovic in the grand
Murray beat the Serb to win the 2012 U.S. Open and the 2013 Wimbledon
for his two grand slam titles.
Wawrinka fought off two set points in the pivotal third set on the way
to a 7-5 4-6 7-6(7) 6-2 win over Tommy Robredo and the Australian Open
champion was then able to rest up and watch his next opponent,
Nishikori, slug it out with Raonic.
[© 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2014 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.