Unlike previous entries of the Super Smash Bros series, it is not necessary to fight in a set number of matches to unlock a specific character. The character unlocking order is now randomised, so no player will be approached by new challengers in the same order.
In Super Smash Bros Ultimate, the first time that you complete a regular match you will be faced with a “challenger approaching” encounter. Upon your victory, the defeated character will be added to your playable roster. After your success or failure in this match, there will be a ten minute window where you will not be challenged again. After this time period is over, simply play another match to activate another challenger approach.
To get around this limitation, simply close the game and return to the Switch main menu, and then reload Super Smash Bros Ultimate. This will reset the “challenger approach” time out clock, allowing you to play another match and potentially unlock a new fighter.