BNP PARIBAS MASTERS 2012
Tipsarevic Stays On Course; Llodra Ousts Del Potro
by ATP Staff|
Eighth seed Janko Tipsarevic stayed on course to qualify for the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals as he ended Juan Monaco’s hopes with a 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 victory on Thursday in the third round of the BNP Paribas Masters. The Serb converted two of his three break points and lost only eight points on his first serve to prevail in two hours and 14 minutes.
Tipsarevic is currently ninth in the South African Airways ATP Rankings Race To London and bidding to qualify for the season finale for the first time. He could secure his berth later today, should Nicolas Almagro and Milos Raonic both lose their third-round matches against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Sam Querrey respectively.
The 28-year-old Tipsarevic improved to a 57-24 match record on the season highlighted by winning his third ATP World Tour title at the MercedesCup in Stuttgart (d. Monaco). The Belgrade native is attempting to win his first ATP World Tour Masters 1000 trophy and goes onto face Polish qualifier Jerzy Janowicz.
French wild card Michael Llodra continued his inspired run in Paris by ending seventh seed Juan Martin del Potro’s 11-match winning streak. The 32-year-old Llodra, who came into Paris having not won a tour-level singles match since reaching the Roland Garros second round in May, broke serve twice to beat del Potro 6-4, 6-3 in 69 minutes. Llodra had not beaten del Potro before in four previous attempts.
"Coming here I knew I was playing well," said Llodra. "But now, thinking I would be able to beat [John] Isner and del Potro, I wasn't sure. It's true that the conditions are getting faster, so I served very well today. Del Potro is a good returner, but he couldn't do anything because I served really well. When my favourite weapon works, then it's difficult to play against me."
Del Potro came into Paris on the back of successive wins at the Erste Bank Open in Vienna (d. Zemlja) and the Swiss Indoors Basel (d. Federer). He dropped to a 63-15 match record on the season and will return to action at next week’s season finale in London.
Canadian No. 14 seed Milos Raonic saw his outside chance of qualifying for the year-end championships come to an end as he was beaten by Sam Querrey 6-3, 7-6(1). Raonic recorded his 1000th ace of the season, but lost serve in the eighth game of the first set and could not match Querrey in the tie-break as the American claimed victory in 71 minutes. A day earlier, the No. 23-ranked Querrey had upset World No. 2 Novak Djokovic in the second round.