Arthur Rinderknech eventually gave in. And Brandon Nakashima won (7-6 , 1-6, 7-5), Tuesday. After saving three match points with his serve, the 27-year-old Frenchman saw his last forehand hit the net, which deprived him of a quarter-final in Lyon, a stage it had reached in 2021.
Rinderknech had a good card to play against Nakashima, certainly 52nd in the world, but not very comfortable since the start of the season (only 4 wins) and on clay (a victory this year, Monday, against Diego Schwartzman). But the Parisian, injury return to Roma after two months outdid not enter it.
Nakashima against Paul or Barrère in the quarterfinals
Broken at 2-2 in the first set, he immediately picked up. And, under the eyes of the mayor of Lyon, Grégoire Doucet and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, the two men disputed the set in the tie-break, won 8 points to 6 by the American on his fifth occasion. Rinderknech then reacted perfectly. Relying on his two main weapons, the service and the forehand, the 78th in the world broke away (4-0) and easily dominated the second set.
The third act seemed to be heading for another tiebreak, but the 21-year-old American managed to get more serves from Rinderknech. And the Frenchman, guilty of several errors in the last game, therefore let Nakashima join the quarter-finals. The latter will face Friday either his compatriot Tommy Paul (17th), or another Frenchman, Grégoire Barrère (55th), who beat him (6-3, 6-3) in Rome two weeks ago.