Top-seeded Kevin Anderson of South Africa lost to Victor Hanescu of Romania 6-4, 6-4 on Wednesday in the second round of the Grand Prix Hassan II.
The Moroccan tournament lost its two highest-seeded players on the same day, as No. 2 Gael Monfils of France withdrew after straining his right ankle in practice.
Hanescu saved five break points and broke for a 3-2 lead in the first set. Anderson, last year’s runner-up, dropped serve again at 1-1 in the second.
Hanescu’s quarter-final opponent is scheduled to be Federico Delbonis of Argentina, who edged Canadian qualifier Filip Peliwo 6-2, 6-7 (5/7), 6-4.
The sixth-seeded Delbonis, who won the Brazil Open last month, won six straight games to take the first set and lead 2-0 in the second. However, Peliwo, the 2012 world junior champion, fought back to force a tiebreaker and leveled at one set apiece. In the third, Delbonis earned the decisive break at 4-4.
Also, Aleksandr Nedovyesov of Kazakhstan and Jiri Vesely of the Czech Republic advanced to the second round.
Vesely defeated Leonardo Mayer of Argentina 6-4, 6-3 and Nedovyesov earned his first victory on the main tour by rallying from a 5-2 deficit in the opening set to stun the seventh-seeded Robin Haase of the Netherlands 7-6 (8/6), 6-4.
The Spanish trio of Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, Albert Montanes and Pablo Carreno Busta of Spain also won their first-round matches.
The eighth-seeded Garcia-Lopez beat Mikhail Kukushkin of Kazakhstan 7-6 (7/5), 7-6 (8/6) despite making seven double faults.
Named most improved player of the year by the ATP for climbing from 715th to 65th in the rankings last season, Carreno Busta cruised past Tobias Kamke of Germany 6-1, 6-2. The Spaniard broke Kamke twice in each set and did not face any break point.
Montanes saved all four break points he faced in his 6-2, 6-3 win over Kenny de Schepper of France.
US MEN’S CLAY COURT
AFP, HOUSTON, Texas
Germany’s Dustin Brown upset top-seeded American John Isner in three sets to reach the quarter-finals of the US Men’s Clay Court Championships on Wednesday.
The world No. 101 Brown outlasted the hard-hitting defending champ Isner 6-4, 6-7 (7/9), 7-6 (7/4) on the clay courts at the River Oaks Country Club.
Isner forced a deciding set by winning an extended tiebreaker in the second, but Brown rebounded to claim the final tiebreak. It was his first-ever victory over a top-10 opponent.
Isner, who is ranked ninth in the world, beat Nicolas Almargo in last year’s final.
Brown is next to face Sam Querrey in the quarter-finals after the 2010 Houston finalist toppled former champion Lleyton Hewitt of Australia earlier on Wednesday.
Querrey beat the seventh-seeded former world No. 1 Hewitt 6-3, 6-4 in just 76 minutes. Hewitt, who is enjoying a resurgence this year, won in Houston back in 2009.
In opening-round play on Wednesday, Argentine Juan Monaco stopped India’s Somdev Devvarman 7-6 (7/4), 6-2, and Colombian Santiago Giraldo ousted Aussie Matthew Ebden 6-1, 6-2.
Monaco titled here two years ago.