ATP 250 tournament in Sydney kicked off on Sunday with 3 main draw matches and the final qualifying round. Alexandr Dolgopolov played well in Brisbane, losing to Nick Kyrgios in the quarter-final, and he recovered in time to make a winning start in Sydney as well, beating Viktor Troicki by 6-3 6-7 7-5 in 2 hours and 20 minutes. This was their 5th meeting on the Tour and the third straight triumph for the Ukrainian who saved 9 out 13 break points he faced to battle past his rival and earn the place in the second round.
Troicki struggled more on his second serve (they made 16 double faults in total) and he got broken 6 times from 9 break points he offered to Dolgopolov to end on the losing side despite 6 break points he had in the decider.
Alexandr lost his serve in the very first game of the match but he recovered his game immediately and rattled off 16 out of the next 19 points to move 4-1 in front, breaking Viktor in games 2 and 4. He served well until the end of the set and he clinched it by 6-3, converting his second break point in game 9.
The second set lasted almost an hour and it kicked off with 3 breaks, 2 for Dolgopolov who found himself 5-3 in front after 3 easy service games. Serving for the match in game 10, he was broken at 15 and he even had to save 2 set points in the following service game since the momentum switched to the other side of the net.
Troicki saved a match point in the tie break to steal it by 8-6 and send the match into a decider, with him as the favorite now to cross the finish line first. He wasted 4 break points in game 3 but found the way to break Dolgopolov in game 5, only to drop serve at love in the following game, as they were leveled at 3-3 again.
Alexandr saved a break point in game 9, in one of the crucial points of the match, and he earned a break in game 12 to close the encounter just before the tie break and book his place in the second round. After an amazing 2017 season with 36 ATP wins and 2 ATP titles, Damir Dzumhur is ready for another good campaign in the year ahead of us, earning his first win in Sydney following a convincing 6-1 6-4 win over Jan-Lennard Struff in exactly an hour. They met in St.
Petersburg at the end of the last season as well and Damir also grabbed that one in straight sets, playing even better today. Bosnian's serve worked like a charm, he lost 3 points behind his first serve and 14 in total, saving 2 out of 3 break points he faced, and he was all over Struff on the return, winning 50% of the return points and scoring 4 breaks from 10 opportunities he created.
The first set was decided by 2 breaks that Damir claimed in games 2 and 6, and they traded breaks at the start of the second set to stay on the level terms until 3-3. One loose service games cost Struff the match, he was broken in the 7th game and Dzumhur sealed the deal after winning 8 out of the last 9 points in his service games.
Italian veteran Paolo Lorenzi needed an hour and 54 minutes to oust the home player with a wild card, Jordan Thompson, by 7-6 6-4. Lorenzi blasted 15 aces, something we don't see too often from him, but he struggled on his second serve to give Jordan 6 break chances.
Aussie converted 2 and he lost serve 3 times from as many break points he offered to Lorenzi, unable to send the match into a decider. They traded breaks in the 2nd and 3rd games of the match and they stayed toe to toe until the tie break that Paolo won by 7-5.
He got his 3rd mini-break in the 12th point when Jordan double faulted and this gave him a boost of confidence before the second set. Another double fault from Thompson cost him a break of serve in the second game of set number 2, and Paolo served for the win in the 9th game, leading 5-3.
Jordan saved 2 match points and he broke back with a deep return that pushed him back to the positive side of the scoreboard, serving to level the score at 5-5. Instead of that, Lorenzi earned his third match point with a volley winner and he converted it when the Aussie sent a backhand long, avoiding to spend further time on the court in what has been one of the warmest days in Sydney since 1939. Sunday's results:
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