Sat, Feb 08, 2014 - Page 19 News List

Gasquest cruises into Open Sud de France quarters

AP, MONTPELLIER, France

France’s Gael Monfils returns to Lukasz Kubot of Poland in their Open Sud de France singles match in Montpellier, France, on Thursday.

Photo: AFP

Top seed Richard Gasquet of France easily advanced to the Open Sud de France quarter-finals after beating fellow countryman Paul-Henri Mathieu 6-1, 6-3 on Thursday.

Gasquet, the defending champion, saved all seven break-point chances he faced and broke Mathieu’s serve twice in each set.

He next faces another countryman, qualifier Albano Olivetti.

Third seed Jerzy Janowicz of Poland beat Adrian Mannarino of France 7-6 (7/2), 6-3 and next plays seventh seed Edouard Roger-Vasselin of France after he won 6-3, 6-4 against Dustin Brown of Germany.

Earlier, veteran Marc Gicquel beat second seed Gilles Simon 7-6 (7/4), 6-3 in their first meeting for six years. The Frenchmen dropped serve twice in the first set, but Giquel broke Simon two more times in the second.

Gicquel moves on to face sixth seed Jarkko Nieminen of Finland, who advanced with a 7-6 (7/5), 7-6 (7/5) win over wild-card Pierre-Hugues Herbert, despite the Frenchman’s 23 aces.

Fifth seed Gael Monfils had little trouble beating Portugal’s Joao Sousa 6-3, 6-2, while Olivetti downed Russia’s Nikolay Davydenko 7-6 (7/5), 6-7 (5/7), 7-5.

In another second-round upset, fourth seed Dmitry Tursunov of Russia lost 7-5, 6-4 against Denis Istomin of Uzbekistan, who next plays Monfils.

ROYAL GUARD OPEN

AP, VINA DEL MAR, Chile

Top seed Fabio Fognini of Italy defeated Aljaz Bedene of Slovenia 6-4, 7-6 (7/0) on Thursday to reach the quarter-finals of the Royal Guard Open.

Fognini next faces No. 5 seed Jeremy Chardy of France, who moved into the final eight by beating Pablo Carreno Busta of Spain 6-3, 7-6 (7/5).

Third seed Nicolas Almagro of Spain won his first competitive match in more than three months, defeating Martin Alund of Argentina 4-6, 6-3, 6-4.

A shoulder injury forced Almagro to miss Sydney and the Australian Open.

Of his 12 titles on the ATP Tour, all on clay, six were on the Latin America swing, the most of any player. He has won in Brazil, Argentina and Mexico, and is bidding for his first win in Chile.

He will face first-time ATP Tour quarter-finalist Daniel Taro, who beat eighth seed Federico Delbonis of Argentina 1-6, 7-6 (7/5), 7-6 (8/6).

Taro, a Japanese who entered as a qualifier, was born in New York, but trains in Valencia, Spain, where he learned the clay-court game.

Unseeded Daniel Gimeno-Traver of Spain beat Hector Zeballos of Argentina 6-2, 6-4 and his opponent in the last eight is Leonardo Mayer of Argentina, who advanced on Wednesday with a victory over second seed Tommy Robredo of Spain.

Rafael Nadal, the world’s top clay-court player, skipped the event.

On Thursday, he pulled out of next week’s event in Buenos Aires, saying a stomach virus had kept him from practicing. He also is recovering from a back injury.

It is not clear if he will play the following week in Rio de Janeiro.

ZAGREB INDOORS

AP, ZAGREB

German qualifier Bjorn Phau upset second seed Mikhail Youzhny to reach the quarter-finals of the Zagreb Indoors on Thursday.

Phau beat the Russian 4-6, 7-5, 6-1 and will compete in his first quarter-final since Stuttgart, Germany, in 2012.

Another qualifier and a lucky loser also made the last eight.

Youzhny, the 2012 champion, was playing well until he lost his serve in the second set when he foot-faulted. Phau used the opportunity to win four games in a row and turn the match around.

“It was not the foot fault that caused me to lose the match,” Youzhny said, adding he felt sick during play.

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