Querrey Leads Four Americans Through
by Matt Fitzgerald|
Fans of American tennis were delighted with Friday’s results at the Sony Ericsson Open, as several home country favorites advanced into the third round of the men’s singles draw.
James Blake won his second straight match in a deciding tie-break, upsetting No. 28 seed Thomaz Bellucci 2-6, 6-4, 7-6(6). The Brazilian took out Blake last year in Miami in three sets but the American avenged the loss later in 2010 in Stockholm. The win puts him in the third round or better at the tournament for the fourth time. Blake’s opponent in round three will be Novak Djokovic, who later crushed Denis Istomin 6-0, 6-1 in the opening night session match.
No. 19 seed Sam Querrey, also in Djokovic’s quarter of the draw, defeated Mikhail Kukushkin handily, 6-3, 6-2. Querrey fired 13 aces and did not drop serve. His next match is against 16th seeded Viktor Troicki. The two have faced off twice before, each winning a match on clay, so this is their first meeting on a hard court.
John Isner, seeded 30th, tipped the scale in a close battle with Igor Andreev, winning 6-4, 5-7, 7-6(2). After failing to convert a match point on Andreev’s last service game in the third set, Isner constructed a well played tie-break to advance into the third round. His section of the draw opened up, as fellow American Alexander Bogomolov Jr. pulled the upset of the tournament to date with a straight sets victory over No. 5 seed Andy Murray. The two Americans will play for a fourth round berth.
Spain’s David Ferrer, the sixth seed, dominated qualifier Igor Kunitsyn 6-2, 6-1 in their second round match. The No. 6 seed broke the Russian six times to secure the routine victory. Early day session winner Somdev Devvarmann awaits Ferrer in the third round.
Fernando Verdasco, the No. 9 seed and Stanislas Wawrinka, seeded 12th, both lost in three sets. Verdasco fell to Pablo Andujar in a nail-biter; Andujar rallied to swing the match in his favor, winning 3-6, 7-6(3), 6-4. Marcel Granollers defeated Wawrinka 6-0, 6-7(4), 6-3 in two hours and 15 minutes to move on to the third round.
Frenchman Richard Gasquet played well in his win over Paolo Lorenzi of Italy, taking the match 6-2, 6-3. Gasquet won 60 percent of the match points and hit eight aces and only one double fault. He next plays Mardy Fish, an earlier winner over Julien Benneteau.
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