ATP Tour midweek update: Reigning champ advances in Bulgaria as top seeds book quarter finals spots in San Diego

THERE was a mixed bag of results on the ATP Tour this week with mostly top seeds moving through to the quarter finals, and a couple of shock losses at Challenger level.


San Diego’s ATP 250 event has largely gone to plan with five of the top eight seeded players reaching the quarter finals stage. Top seed Andrey Rublev crushed local hope Brandon Nakashima en route to the last eight, and now faces Diego Schwartzman in the quarter finals. Nakashima stunned the out-of-sorts Fabio Fognini in the opening round, but was no match for Rublev, suffering a 6-2 6-1 defeat at the hands of the Russian, whilst Schwartzman fought back from a first set deficit to defeat South African Lloyd Harris in three sets, 3-6 6-1 6-4.

Canadian Denis Shapovalov is also through to the last eight, knocking off United States’ Taylor Fritz in straight sets 7-6 6-2, whilst Cameron Norris toppled compatriot and eighth seed Dan Evans in a tight two-set contest, 7-6 6-3. Meanwhile a late withdrawal opened the door for Danish lucky loser August Holmgren, though the 905th ranked player ran into a merciless Grigor Dimitrov who ran out a 6-1 6-1 winner in 56 minutes. The Bulgarian now faces Russian Aslan Karatsev in the last eight.

Karatsev dropped the first set against fifth seed Hubert Hurkacz, but bounced back to win the last two sets and claim a 5-7 6-4 6-2 victory to advance through. The remaining clash of the quarter finals is second seed Casper Ruud up against ninth seed Lorenzo Sonego. Ruud defeated British wildcard and Grand Slam winner Andy Murray 7-5 6-4, while Sonego toppled impressive young American Sebastian Korda, 6-4 6-3. The victor of their respective quarter final will play either Karasev or Dimitrov in the semi-final.


Reigning champion Jannik Sinner has rolled into the quarter finals with Italy and Australia making up four of the final eight competitors. Sinner defeated Belarusian Egor Gerasimov 6-2 7-6 after the qualifier knocked off Canadian Vasek Pospisil in the opening round to prevent a 2020 final rematch. Sinner’s compatriot Gianluca Mager is also through to the next stage after toppling Serbian Miomir Kecmanovic, and sixth seed Frenchman Adrian Mannarino. Mager is taking on second seed Gael Monfils who has reached the final eight without playing a ball.

Monfils had a bye in the opening round and then a walkover against Belarusian Ilya Ivashka to reach the last eight. American Marcos Giron stunned third seed Alex de Minaur in two tiebreakers to halt an all-Australian quarter final, with the world number 67 now to face de Minaur’s compatriot John Millman in the next match. Millman overcame Ukrainian qualifier Illya Marchenko 5-7 7-6 6-3 and now the draw has opened up for the eighth seed.

In the top half of the draw, Sinner will take on Australian James Duckworth who had impressive back-to-back wins over Emil Ruusuvuori and Benoit Paire to reach the final eight, whilst in the other quarter final, lucky loser Kamil Majchrzak will face fifth seed Filip Krajinovic. Majchrzak was lucky enough to overcome the only player ranked lower than him in the draw in Bulgarian wildcard Dimitar Kuzmanov, but the latter was no easy beat having stunned Italian wonderkid Lorenzo Musetti in the Round of 32. Krajinovic has only dropped six games on his way to the quarter finals, including two 6-0 sets, and a 6-3 6-0 win over compatriot Laslo Djere.


Six tournaments with an ATP80 or higher status are running parallel across the globe. At the 125 event in Orleans, France, Ugo Humbert was an unbackable favourite given he was by far the best player in the draw, ranked inside the Top 30. It did not stop him being rolled by compatriot Quentin Halys however, losing 7-6 6-4 including a whopping 14-12 first set tiebreaker. Despite the high volume of French players at the tournament, just three remain, with veteran Richard Gasquet joining Hugo Grenier and Corentin Moutet in the final eight. Danish teenager Holger Vitus Nodskov Rune is also alive in the tournament, with fifth seed Jiri Vesely the second ranked player remaining behind Gasquet.

In Lima, Peru, Juan Manuel Cerundolo continued his ripping form at ITF level by reaching the quarter finals and being the standout remaining player after the three other top four seeds – including brother Francisco – were knocked out. French young gun Hugo Gaston is the top ranked talent remaining on the clay in Lisbon following shock losses to Thiago Monteiro and Taro Daniel, with Gaston the third seed at the event and defeating Dutchman Robin Haase in the ATP80 event.

In Romania, Australian Thanasi Kokkinakis rolled into the quarter finals with a dominant couple of wins as seventh seed. The talented player will next play rising Slovakian Alex Molcan in the next round, with the top seed, Stefano Travaglia still alive in the tournament. Meanwhile at Murcia in Spain, Roberto Carballes Baena and Tallon Griekspoor booked their quarter finals spots with wins over United States players, though are only two of three seeds remaining in the event.

Picture credit: ATP Tour

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