Jordan Thompson has bowed out of the quarter-finals of an ATP Tour event for the second week running, going down in two tough sets to Brandon Nakashima at the Atlanta Open.
The American is proving to be the Australian’s nemesis after also eliminating Thompson from the Los Cabos Open in Mexico last week.
Like on the first occasion when Nakashima won 6-3 6-4 7-6 (7-4), Friday’s contest was another close affair with the world No.115 triumphing 7-6 (7-5) 7-5.
Six points was the margin between winning and losing, with Thompson dishing out 16 aces to Nakashima’s four.
Thompson, who also double faulted three times, struggled when he didn’t get his first serve in.
The Sydneysider won just 52 per cent of points on second serve as compared to Nakashima’s 75, the most telling statistic of the contest.
Nakashima will now meet Emil Ruusuvuori, who beat No.3 seed Cameron Norrie 7-6 (7-1) 6-3, for a place in the final.
Finn Ruusuvuori converted both his break point opportunities in the surprise win over the in-form Norrie, who won the Los Cabos Open last week and beat Australian Nic Kyrgios in under an hour in the earlier round.
Aussie battler Chris O’Connell, who caused a major stir in the competition by eliminating No.2 seed Jannik Sinner to achieve the best result of his career, was involved in a mighty battle against No.6 seed John Isner when play was suspended.
Ranked No.132 in the world, O’Connell leads the big-serving American and 2018 Wimbledon semi-finallist 5-4 in the first set.
The Sydneysider fought off two break points and served six aces to world No.35 Isner’s 10.
The winner will meet Taylor Fritz in the semi-final after he beat fellow countryman Reilly Opelka 7-6 (7-5) 6-7 (7-3) 7-6 (7-4).