ATP Vienna: Berrettini edges Dimitrov. Khachanov, Rublev, Monfils advance
by JOVICA ILIC | VIEW 2286
The 3rd seed Matteo Berrettini is through to the quarter-final in Vienna following a tight 7-6, 7-6 triumph over Grigor Dimitrov in an hour and 50 minutes. Firing 14 aces, the ATP Finals contender blasted 14 aces and lost 17 points behind the initial shot, never facing a break point and earning four chances on the return that could have pushed him towards the finish line earlier.
Dimitrov saved those to stay neck and neck with the rival all the time before losing ground in both tie breaks to propel Berrettini through. Nothing could have separated the US Open semi-finalists until the ninth game of the first set when Berrettini earned two break chances, denied by a couple of volleys from Dimitrov who stayed in touch until 5-5 in the tie break, sending a loose forehand in the 12th point to hand the set to Matteo.
Delivering one good hold after another in set number two, the Italian wasted more chances on the return in games two and 12, repelling that match point with a forehand drive-volley winner before Berrettini grabbed the tie break 7-1 to secure his spot in the quarter-final.
The 2nd seed Karen Khachanov is also in the last eight, staying on the court for two hours and 15 minutes before a qualifier Marton Fucsovics retired while trailing 6-3, 4-6, 4-1. The struggling Russian had 22 break chances up to that point, converting five and finding the rhythm again in the decider before the Hungarian had to finish the encounter earlier than he was hoping for.
Pablo Carreno Busta took down Stockholm champion Denis Shapovalov 6-3, 7-5 in an hour and 12 minutes for the third victory over the Canadian in four encounters. Landing 85% of the first serve in, the Spaniard barely lost a point in his games and never experienced troubles, mounting the pressure on Denis who failed to repeat those numbers, serving at only 47% and getting broken once in each set to end his run in the first round.
Settling into the right rhythm, Pablo grabbed a break in the second game after a backhand error from Shapovalov, closing the opener in the ninth game and hoping for more of the same in set number two. There, Denis stayed on the level terms until 5-5 when he sprayed a terrible forehand error to give serve away, allowing Carreno Busta to seal the deal with a forehand winner in the next game for the place in the second round.
Mikhail Kukushkin ousted the 8th seed Borna Coric 6-4, 6-4 in an hour and 21 minutes, saving three out of four break chances and pushing Borna to the limits on the second serve to grab three breaks and move over the top in straight sets.
Moscow champion Andrey Rublev needed two hours and 17 minutes to halt his coeval Alexander Bublik 6-1, 6-7, 7-6, wasting a 6-1, 3-1 advantage and two match points on the return at 6-5 in set number two. Carried by this momentum, Bublik grabbed the tie break 7-3 to force a decider where he was two points away from the finish line four times, unable to make that final push and losing the breaker 8-6 to send Rublev through.
The 4th seed Gael Monfils bested Dennis Novak 2-6, 7-5, 6-3 in an hour and 37 minutes, never facing a break point after a slow opening set and breaking Dennis once in sets two and three to make a winning start and stay in contention for the place in London.
Sam Querrey defeated Adrian Mannarino 6-3, 6-4 in an hour and 23 minutes, fending off all four break chances and delivering one break in each set to hit the finish line and advance into the last 16. Check all the results HERE.