Japan's Nishioka reaches round of 16 at Australian Open tennis tournament

Japanese tennis player Nishioka Yoshihito has advanced to the last 16 in the Australian Open men's singles -- his best showing ever in a Grand Slam event.

Nishioka defeated American Mackenzie McDonald in straight sets in the third round on Friday in Melbourne.

McDonald had beaten defending champion Rafael Nadal in the previous match in straight sets.

Nishioka is ranked 33rd in the world, while McDonald is 65th. Both are 27 years old.

The first set went into a tiebreak, but Nishioka nailed a shot close to the line to win the set 7-6.

The second set was briefly interrupted by a medical timeout for McDonald. Nishioka held firm by hitting strokes right and left, winning the set 6-3.

McDonald tried to turn the tide by using an underhand serve in the third, but Nishioka prevailed, taking the set 6-2.

Nishioka is the first Japanese men's singles player to reach the round of 16 in the Australian Open since Nishikori Kei in 2019.