Thursday in Umag was reserved for some of the favorites, but Gael Monfils will not be among them anymore, losing to Rogerio Dutra Silva 7-6 4-6 6-3 in 2 hours and 16 minutes. They played at the Olympics last year when Gael moved forward in straight sets, but experienced Brazilian used the clay surface to give his best today, and it ended well for him.
Dutra Silva spends most of his season on Challenger Tour, with some rare ATP wins, and this will be his first quarter-final on the ATP level since Kitzbuhel in distant 2012! Gael struggled to find the right pace on his serve and he was plagued by 11 double faults, which was just too much.
Both players scored 4 breaks from 25 break chances in total, and Brazilian prevailed after taking 5 points more than his rival. The match started with 8 holds (Monfils saved 2 break points in game 3) but out of sudden, we saw 4 straight breaks at 15! Dutra Silva served for the set twice but he got broken on both occasions, as Gael earned the tie break.
There, he was 6-1 down, climbing back to 6-5 before Brazilian converted 5th set point to grab the opener in just under an hour. Monfils raised his level at the start of the second set, racing into a 4-0 lead, before Dutra Silva pulled one break back in game 6, converting his 6th break chance.
He was a point away from a complete turnaround in game 8, but Gael saved a break point to increase the lead to 5-3, and he sealed the set with a good hold in game 10, sending the match into a decider. Dutra Silva fends off a break point in game 3 to stay in touch, and he had to dig deep in game 7 as well, fending off another 4 break chances.
Gael fell apart after those chances he missed, making 3 double faults in a row in game 8 to lose his serve, leaving Rogerio to serve for the victory, his biggest ever. Brazilian was in all sorts of troubles again, but he came back from 0-40 to win the last 5 points and propel himself to the last 8. Second round results: