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Murray Sinks Basilashvili In Sydney

  • Posted: Jan 12, 2022

Andy Murray showed his fighting qualities once again on Wednesday, edging second seed Nikoloz Basilashvili 6-7(4), 7-6(3), 6-3 to advance to the quarter-finals at the Sydney Tennis Classic.

The former World No. 1 demonstrated a mixture of grit and quality as he recovered from squandering three set points on serve at 5-4 in the second set to overcome Basilashvili in a physical encounter that lasted three hours and 15 minutes on Ken Rosewall Arena.


“It was an unbelievably tough match,” Murray said in his on-court interview. “He is hitting the ball consistently bigger than anyone on the Tour. I was having to do a lot of defending and running but my legs stood up well and at the end I served really well in the last set.”

Murray earned his first win of the season against Norway’s Viktor Durasovic in the opening round in Sydney and backed this up against the Georgian, sitting deep behind the baseline as he soaked up Basilashvili’s powerful groundstrokes using a combination of slices and flat backhands.

The Scot, who let out a roar following his hard-fought victory, now leads the Basilashvili 2-0 in their ATPHead2Head series, after also defeating the World No. 23 in the first round at Wimbledon last year. The 34-year-old will next face David Goffin after the Belgian beat Denis Kudla 6-2, 6-3.

“I got a lot of free points on my serve,” Murray said. “When we were in the rallies, it was more on his terms, so I tried to serve a little bit bigger and thankfully they went in. When he was serving, I tried to take time away from him and rush him and I hit some better returns.”

It is the third time Murray has advanced to the quarter-finals at a tour-level event since the start of last season, having enjoyed runs to the last eight in Metz and Stockholm in 2021.

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Koolhof/Skupski March On In Adelaide

  • Posted: Jan 12, 2022

Wesley Koolhof and Neal Skupski continued their strong start to the season on Wednesday, defeating Luke Saville and John-Patrick Smith 7-6(2), 7-6(3) to reach the quarter-finals at the Adelaide International 2.

The third seeds won the title together in Melbourne last week and will play Oscar Otte and Benoit Paire next after the German-French tandem overcame Raven Klaasen and Ben McLachlan 7-6(5), 6-7(9), 10-4.

Australians Aaron Addison and Thomas Fancutt sprung a major surprise, upsetting top seeds Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury 6-7(4), 6-4, 10-8 to advance after one hour and 45 minutes.

They will face Ariel Behar and Gonzalo Escobar in the last eight after the sixth seeds beat Nicholas Monroe and Holger Rune 6-2, 6-4.

Second seeds Ivan Dodig and Marcelo Melo booked their place in the quarter-finals with a 6-3, 1-6, 10-4 victory over Treat Huey and Frederik Nielsen. Fourth seeds Sander Gille and Joran Vligen moved past Steve Johnson and Austin Krajicek 5-7, 6-3, 10-5.

Krawietz/Mies Secure Win In Sydney
At the Sydney Tennis Classic, sixth seeds Kevin Krawietz and Andreas Mies overcame Matwe Middelkoop and Philipp Oswald 6-7(2), 6-4, 10-5 to advance to the quarter-finals.

Aleksandr Nedovyesov and Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi also moved through, defeating Marcelo Arevalo and Jean-Julien Rojer 7-6(5), 6-4 in one hour and 37 minutes.

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Albot Reaches Final Qualifying Round In Melbourne

  • Posted: Jan 12, 2022

Radu Albot reached the third round at the Australian Open last year and maintained his strong record in Melbourne on Wednesday, downing Yosuke Watanuki 6-1, 2-6, 6-2 to advance to the third qualifying round at the first major of the season.

The former World No. 39 broke five times to secure victory in one hour and 41 minutes as he moved to within one win of the Australian Open main draw.

The fifth seed will next face Portugal’s Joao Sousa after the World No. 140 edged Australian Marc Polmans 3-6, 6-0, 6-4 in one hour and 59 minutes. The 32-year-old, who has reached the third round in Melbourne three times (2015, 2016, 2019), fired seven aces to advance.

Mikhail Kukushkin secured his spot in the final qualifying round, defeating Dutchman Robin Haase 7-5, 7-6(2) after one hour and 47 minutes. The former World No. 39 is aiming to make his 12th main draw appearance at the Australian Open.

The 34-year-old next plays Ernesto Escobedo following the American’s 7-6(3), 6-4 win against Andrea Vavassori.

Alejandro Tabilo, who played for Chile at ATP Cup last week, hit eight aces en route to his 77-minute 6-1, 7-5 victory against World No. 227 Constant Lestienne. The 24-year-old will meet Elias Ymer next after the Swede clawed past Mario Vilella Martinez 4-6, 6-4, 7-6(0) in two hours and 26 minutes.

In other action, Dimitry Popko saw off Philip Sekulic 6-4, 6-2, Thomas Fabbiano beat Frederico Ferreira Silva 6-2, 7-5 and Tomas Barrios Vera moved past Thiago Agustin Tirante 6-4, 7-6(1).

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Khachanov Moves Through In Adelaide

  • Posted: Jan 12, 2022

Russia’s Karen Khachanov reached the final in Adelaide last week and set the wheels in motion for another deep run on Wednesday, defeating Gianluca Mager 7-5, 6-3 to advance to the quarter-finals at the Adelaide International 2.

The third seed, who lost to Gael Monfils in the championship match at the Adelaide International 1, fired 13 aces and did not face a break point to triumph after 70 minutes.

The World No. 30 will next play Arthur Rinderknech after the Frenchman edged Nur-Sultan titlist Soonwoo Kwon 5-7, 6-3, 6-2 in two hours.


Fourth-seeded Croatian Marin Cilic recorded his third win in four matches in 2022 as he secured his spot in the last eight with a 7-6(6), 6-2 one-hour 40-minute victory against Spaniard Jaume Munar.

The former World No. 3 won 88 per cent (36/41) of his first-serve points in the pairs first ATPHead2Head meeting to set up a clash against Tommy Paul following the American’s 6-4, 7-6(6) victory over 25-year-old Benjamin Bonzi.

Australia’s Thanasi Kokkinakis also advanced, moving past second seed John Isner 6-7(5), 7-6(5), 7-6(4) in two hours and 45 minutes. It is the biggest win by ATP Ranking that the wild card has secured since 2018, when he defeated then-World No. 1 Roger Federer in the second round in Miami.

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Evans Soars Into Sydney QFs

  • Posted: Jan 12, 2022

Third seed Daniel Evans continued his perfect start to the season Wednesday, overcoming Spaniard Pedro Martinez 6-2, 6-3 to reach the quarter-finals at the Sydney Tennis Classic.

The 31-year-old, who won three singles matches and two doubles rubbers at ATP Cup last week for Great Britain, did not face a break point en route to his 85-minute victory against the Spaniard.

Evans advanced to the final in Sydney in 2017 and will next face either American Maxime Cressy or sixth seed Dusan Lajovic.

Top seed Aslan Karatsev earned his first win of 2022, downing Serbian Miomir Kecmanovic 7-5, 6-4 in one hour and 37 minutes.

The Russian has fond memories in Australia, after enjoying a dream run to the semi-finals at the Australian Open last year. In a strong performance against Kecmanovic, Karatsev won 88 per cent (28/32) of his first-serve points and rallied from a break down in the first set to improve to 2-0 in their ATPHead2Head series.


The 28-year-old, who was named 2021 ATP Most Improved Player of the Year, will next play fifth seed Lorenzo Sonego after the Italian swept aside #NextGenATP Argentine Sebastian Baez 6-2, 6-3 in 81 minutes.

#NextGenATP American Brandon Nakashima also advanced as he maintained his impressive tie-break record at the ATP 250 event to reach the last eight.

The 20-year-old defeated Fabio Fognini 7-6(7), 7-6(6) in one hour and 59 minutes to earn his second tour-level victory over the Italian. The World No. 68 also won two tie-break sets against Jiri Vesely in his first-round match on Tuesday.

Nakashima will meet countryman Reilly Opelka in the quarter-finals following the fourth seeds 6-3, 6-2 triumph over Australian wild card Jordan Thompson. The big-serving World No. 25 fired 10 aces to advance in 79 minutes.

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