World number one Carlos Alcaraz surged into the last 16 of the US Open on Saturday as Tunisia's Ons Jabeur kept her dream of a first Grand Slam title alive with victory in a three-set thriller.
Alcaraz, looking to become the first man to successfully defend the title since Roger Federer in 2008, produced a flurry of magical shots en route to dispatching British 26th seed Dan Evans 6-2, 6-3, 4-6, 6-3.
It was another stylish victory for the 20-year-old Spaniard, who will face Italy's Matteo Arnaldi in the fourth round on Monday.
The Spaniard kept Evans on the back foot with his booming forehand while delighting the Arthur Ashe Stadium crowd with several of his signature forehand drop shots.
Alcaraz also conjured one of the shots of the tournament to clinch a decisive break in the fourth set, curling a logic-defying forehand up the line past Evans for a 4-2 lead.
Alcaraz, who will surrender his world number one ranking to Novak Djokovic at the end of this tournament, admitted he was motivated by matching Federer in defending his crown.
"Obviously defending the title is a goal for me," he said. "I'm looking for that. Nobody's done it here since Roger so I'd love to be part of tournament history with him."
Alcaraz's win keeps him on track for a repeat quarter-final against Italy's Jannik Sinner, a year after the two men dueled in an epic five-hour five-setter that finished at 2.50am, the latest finish in US Open history.
Sixth seed Sinner did his part to keep the rematch on course Saturday with a stylish 6-3, 2-6, 6-4, 6-2 win over Swiss veteran Stan Wawrinka.
Alcaraz's last-16 opponent Arnaldi, meanwhile, advanced after upsetting 16th-seeded Briton Cameron Norrie, winning 6-3, 6-4, 6-3 in just under two hours.
Arnaldi, 22, had never played in the main draw of a Grand Slam before this season, with a brief run to the second round at Roland Garros his best performance in a major championship.
There was better luck for another member of Britain's US Open contingent elsewhere though, with Jack Draper reaching the last 16 of a Grand Slam for the first time with a 6-4, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 victory over American world No.89 Michael Mmoh.
Draper will face eighth-seeded Russian Andrey Rublev on Monday for a place in the quarter-finals. Rublev, a quarter-finalist at last year's tournament, defeated France's Arthur Rinderknech 3-6, 6-3, 6-1, 7-5 to advance.
Meanwhile Russia's 2021 US Open champion and third seed Daniil Medvedev made it safely into the last 16 in a late-night 6-2, 6-2, 7-6 (8/6) victory over Argentina's Sebastian Baez.