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Summary

  1. Rafael Nadal beats Leonardo Mayer 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-1 6-4
  2. Nadal loses marathon first set to 'lucky loser' from Argentina
  3. But world number one fights back to reach last 16
  4. Federer v Lopez - follow via our live scores page
  5. World number one Pliskova saves match point before beating Zhang
  6. Thiem, Del Potro & Goffin through in men's draw
  7. Fabio Fognini suspended for verbally abusing an umpire

Live Reporting

By Caroline Chapman and Amy Lofthouse

All times stated are UK

Get involved

That's all from us, folks.

We'll be back on Sunday afternoon (BST) for more US Open goodness.

'I fought a lot mentally'

Rafael Nadal, speaking after his 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-1 6-4 win: "All the matches have been very tight. I am very happy. I don't know how many break points I had before I got the first one. Mentally, I fought a lot until that moment then I think I play better.

"I'd like to improve my forehand. At the end of the match I was hitting more on the line. At the beginning I created opportunities but I felt he had too many chances to go for the ball on my forehand.

On potentially meeting Federer in the semis: "I am in the fourth round now. I don't think much about that. It's a long way away. All the matches have been very tough. The only thing I am looking for is the practice tomorrow to keep working hard and focus on the match against Dolgopolov."

Hard work ahead for Nadal

Piers Newbery

BBC Sport at Flushing Meadows

Credit to Mayer, he fought off 19 break points and 13 in a row against the world number one, but in the end it's not really possibly to red-line it for three hours plus. A final tally of 52 errors was double that of Nadal, although to call them unforced would be harsh.

Nadal moves on but is still grinding through the low gears, and another week of hard work lies ahead.

Leon Smith

Great Britain Davis Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra at Flushing Meadows

Nadal was so tough mentally there in the second set when he needed to be and that proved crucial.

Officially we are still in the day session at Flushing Meadows.

The night session was due to start 90 minutes ago.

No one keeps Roger in the corner (apart from Rafa). He's up next on Arthur Ashe Court, against Feliciano Lopez.

But first, Nadal's going to speak on court.

Leon Smith

Great Britain Davis Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra at Flushing Meadows

It is amazing to think when you look at this match that Mayer came in to the tournament as a lucky loser.

It just shows you the standard of tennis that is there outside the top 100.

Game, set and match - Nadal

Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-4 Mayer

Vamos!

Rafa Nadal screams with relief and looks up to the sky as he watches the ball sail past the baseline.

He wasn't at his best again today, but once again he's broken down his opponent. Remarkable.

Nadal
Getty Images

Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-1 5-4 Mayer*

Here we go again.

The umpire urges the rowdy crowd to be quiet as Rafa Nadal serves for the match for a second time.

Mayer hits out a backhand for 15-0 and can't scale the net for the forehand. It's 30-0.

But Nadal then completely mucks up a forehand and it loops way, way out of bounds. An odd choice of shot. 30-15.

And then, after a remarkable rally everything pauses as the ball has flown all over the place and no one really knows what's happened.

On review, Mayer's backhand DID land on the line and he DID make a late, late call. It's 30-30. Drama!

Rafa is not happy, but he composes himself and earns match point.

Leon Smith

Great Britain Davis Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra at Flushing Meadows

Wow, how hard did he hit that forehand. He is doing a fine job of keeping this match alive.

Mayer is going to give it absolutely everything.

*Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-1 5-4 Mayer

It ain't over till it's over, as legendary New Yorker Lenny Kravitz once sang.

Leo Mayer stutters to 40-30 and goes on to hold.

There's life in the old dog yet! Nadal will try again to serve for the match.

'Watch Mayer break back...'

It's fair to say the stirring resistance shown by Mayer to break back didn't go down that well with the queuing night crowd outside...

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BBC Sport

Leon Smith

Great Britain Davis Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra at Flushing Meadows

That comes from Mayer's mindset, he is not allowing himself to lose focus and he is still playing for every point.

Mayer breaks

Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-1 5-3 Mayer*

Here we go then...

Forehand winner from Nadal for 15-0, before he hits long to make it 15-15.

And then he shanks past the baseline again for 15-30. Hummmm.

The two-time champion pulls out a powerful forehand to level.

But then he nets on the next point. Break point Mayer!

My oh my - Mayer's taken it! Rafa's gone wide. Well...

Leon Smith

Great Britain Davis Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra at Flushing Meadows

It is a formality now for Nadal. Mayer has brought so much to this match, those first two sets were really testing for Nadal.

Nadal to serve for the match

*Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-1 5-2 Mayer

We've hit the three-hour mark in this third-round match! And we're still going...just about.

Having raced through the third set, we've slowed down again.

Mayer and Nadal are neck and neck on 30-30. Mayer tries to finish off a forehand on the line but it's just wide. Nadal brings up break point.

He's got it! Leo Mayer hits long and Nadal will serve for the match.

Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-1 4-2 Mayer*

The Rafa Nadal steam train to the fourth round has come to an abrupt halt for a second.

The Spaniard is 15-30 down.

Oh, wait. Fire the engines back up, slam the doors, sound the horn. The Nadal express is back on its way thanks to some fine serving.

Choo choo.

Nadal
Getty Images

Gigi Salmon

BBC Radio 5 live sports extra commentator at Flushing Meadows

I am a little disappointed in the Mayer box as only one person in there clapped when he turned to them after that game.

4/10 for that performance.

*Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-1 3-2 Mayer

Mayer's made a sudden outburst. "LET'S GO, LET'S GO," he screams.

Isn't that Rafa's line?

Mayer sees out his service game with a deft ace. He needs a break now.

Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-1 3-1 Mayer*

The grunting has increased 10-fold at Rafael Nadal's end of the court. But I don't think it's signalling his tiredness. He looks invigorated if anything.

The third seed storms ahead to 40-0 and watches Mayer hit wide.

Hold.

Rafael Nadal
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Cat Archer

BBC Radio 5 live at Flushing Meadows

The line for the official US Open shop. You get the feeling in this weather that jumpers and ponchos are going to have gone first.

US Open
BBC Sport

*Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-1 2-1 Mayer

Mayer gives himself a little fist pump as he moves to 40-0. His head's back in the game.

Nadal slams into the net to give the Argentine a quick hold, and the fist pumps continue to come from the riled-up Mayer.

Leon Smith

Great Britain Davis Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra at Flushing Meadows

Nadal's technique is so good on the overheads as he abbreviates his swing by lifting straight up rather than looping like some players.

Gigi Salmon

BBC Radio 5 live sports extra commentator at Flushing Meadows

There's a theory that Rafa knew he could beat Mayer, but wanted to drag it out to keep Roger Federer waiting, annoy him, and put him off his game.

Leon Smith is having none of this. "Is that from David Law? He's the only one who could think of something like that!"

Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-1 2-0 Mayer*

You name a shot, and Rafa will pull it out of his locker.

This time, the two-time US Open champion lands a cracking overhead smash for 30-15, followed up by a powerful forehand winner.

He screws up a backhand, which annoys him greatly, but Mayer nets again and Nadal holds.

Leon Smith

Great Britain Davis Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra at Flushing Meadows

Any time Nadal gets a sniff now he is looking to capitalise. The confidence is fully back and he is in the ascendency.

Nadal gets early break

*Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-1 1-0 Mayer

NO WAY. What a shot!

Nadal comes steaming across the court to try to get a forehand return. He somehow gets a clean hit at full stretch, the ball goes just over the net, bends past Mayer and finds the corner.

Wow, wow, wow.

What's the score now? I don't even know. Oh right, Nadal has the advantage and break point. He takes the game as Mayer nets a volley.

Mayer
Getty Images

*Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-1 0-0 Mayer

Rafa Nadal is full speed ahead. He's raced into a 0-30 on Mayer's serve.

The Argentine lucky loser lands an ace to get off the mark, and then an overhead smash after an energetic exchange.

But Nadal finds another break opportunity with a lush forehand. It goes amiss as he spanks into the net for deuce.

Welcome, Tara Djokovic

More baby/tennis news!

After the arrival of Serena Williams' daughter on Friday, former world number one Novak Djokovic has also welcomed a baby girl a day later. His ex-coach Boris Becker has announced the news on Twitter.

What are the odds of these two meeting in a Grand Slam final in years to come? Surely it's a dead cert with those tennis genes.

View more on twitter

Game and third set

Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 6-1 Mayer

Suddenly the Spaniard is in a hurry.

In just 27 minutes, Rafa Nadal sews up the third set as Mayer fails to clear the net with a lob.

Nadal
Getty Images

Nadal breaks

*Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 5-1 Mayer

While Nadal is pirouetting at the back of the court, Mayer comes in to volley home close to the net but completely messes it up. He's not happy with himself at all.

The next time he tries it he executes it much better. 15-15.

But soon Nadal brings up two break points thanks to a sublime backhand which lands bang on the line.

Mayer saves one, but then double faults. Ouch.

Mayer
Getty Images

Get Involved

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Ope Mosuro: Nadal needs to start matches better if he wants to win the US Open, three straight matches he has struggled in the first set.

Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 4-1 Mayer*

Nadal thinks he's held to love as well, and goes to walk off, but his final forehand is called out.

The Spaniard challenges and Hawk-Eye reveals it's landed on the whitewash.

Off you go then, Rafa lad. You can have a little sit down now. You've earned it.

Leon Smith

Great Britain Davis Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra at Flushing Meadows

It is important for young players to see Mayer still fighting, he could easily have his head permanently dropped now, up against it against the number one in the world.

*Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 3-1 Mayer

This is much better from Leo Mayer. (Can I call him Leo? I feel like we've got to know him well enough over the last two-and-a-bit hours).

The Argentine stops the rot by throwing down his ninth ace and holding to love.

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Leon Smith

Great Britain Davis Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra at Flushing Meadows

We are seeing more winners now from Nadal, the feel for the ball is back and he is feeling good.

Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 3-0 Mayer*

Make that seven games in a row for the steamrolling Rafa.

The Spaniard sees this one out when Mayer fails to return a smash the right side of the lines.

Mayer
Getty Images

Leon Smith

Great Britain Davis Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra at Flushing Meadows

We shouldn't be overly surprised with that, after he toughed out the second set the momentum was with him.

Nadal breaks again

*Nadal 6-7 (3-7) 6-3 2-0 Mayer

Mayer is looking just a little bit frustrated as Nadal buries a clean forehand on the line to earn two break points.

One is saved, but Rafa makes it three breaks and six games in a row as the Argentine hits long.

Nadal
Getty Images

Leon Smith

Great Britain Davis Cup captain on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra at Flushing Meadows

It is going to be interesting to see how Mayer lasts on a hard court compared to clay, will the physical effects that come with the length of this play a part.