Khachanov Earns First Win Since June In Zhuhai

  • Posted: Sep 22, 2023

Khachanov Earns First Win Since June In Zhuhai

Nishioka, Struff advance

Karen Khachanov earned his first tour-level win since June on Friday when he dispatched Australian qualifier Alex Bolt 6-4, 6-4 to reach the quarter-finals at the Huafa Properties Zhuhai Championships.

The top seed was competing for just the second time since his quarter-final match at Roland Garros, where he suffered a stress fracture in his back. The 27-year-old looked sharp at the Chinese ATP 250 hard-court event, though, saving all 10 break points he faced to advance after one hour and 50 minutes.

“I played at the US Open but it was another tournament after the injury at Roland Garros and for me it was very important to get the rhythm and the matches,” Khachanov said. “I feel better than three weeks ago at the US Open. I was looking to find the rhythm and find the form and it is very important for me now to play matches and be competitive.”

Khachanov, who lost in the first round at the US Open on his return to Tour last month, has tasted success in China before, lifting his maiden tour-level trophy in Chengdu in 2016.

Khachanov will next face Mackenzie McDonald after the American clinched a comeback 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 win against Belgian Kimmer Coppejans. The sixth seed has now earned a career-best 30 tour-level wins this season.

Japanese star Yoshihito Nishioka edged South African Lloyd Harris 7-6(4), 7-6(5) to earn consecutive tour-level wins for the first time since Roland Garros in June.

The World No. 46 produced a strong serving performance at the ATP 250 event, winning 81 per cent (42/52) of points behind his first delivery and not facing a break point to advance after two hours and seven minutes.

Nishioka, who reached the last eight in Adelaide earlier this season, will face Jan-Lennard Struff in his second tour-level quarter-final of the season. Struff defeated Chilean Cristian Garin 6-3, 1-6, 6-4 in two hours and two minutes. The third-seeded German is playing in his first event since Halle in June after being sidelined with a hip injury.

Despite his three-month absence, Struff showed signs of why he rose to a career-high No. 21 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings earlier this year, timing the ball cleanly off both wings to overpower Garin.

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