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Del Potro Passes Mahut Test In Sydney; Janowicz Falls

Sydney, Australia

del Potro© AFP/Getty ImagesJuan Martin del Potro fought past Nicolas Mahut in his opener.

Top seed Juan Martin del Potro managed to win just one game in the first set of his 2014 ATP World Tour season, but recovered to defeat Frenchman Nicolas Mahut on Wednesday afternoon at the Apia International Sydney

The World No. 5 broke Mahut for the 4-3 lead in the decisive set and saved two break point chances in the following game. He punctuated the comeback with an ace, 1-6, 6-3, 6-4, after one hour and 51 minutes.

"To be my first match after two months it was okay," said the Argentine. "The court and the balls are really fast and it's tough to play long rallies. And also Mahut serves really well, and he played a lot of slices and volleys. It's tough to feel the ball on the baseline. In the end I broke his serve in the third set, only once, and that was enough to close the match."

Watch del Potro-Mahut Highlights

Del Potro extended his winning streak as a top seed to 20 straight matches. He has won four straight tournaments while seeded No. 1, most recently last October at the Swiss Indoors Basel (d. Federer).

The Argentine will next face Czech Radek Stepanek, who booked his place in the quarter-finals with a 6-2, 7-6(5) win over Spaniard Albert Ramos. Stepanek leads their FedEx ATP Head2Head 3-2.

"He's a really tough opponent," said del Potro. "They won the Davis Cup, so he must feel confidence playing in this surface. He has experience. He's doing really well in doubles matches, too. We play many times. Every match was close. I need to improve a little bit my game basically when I start the match and then see what happens. 

"I'm glad to be in quarter-finals here once again, and I am looking forward to go far in this tournament."

Ukrainian Alexandr Dolgopolov upset second seed Jerzy Janowicz 6-2, 6-2 in just 56 minutes, in what was the Polish 23-year-old’s first appearance on the Apia International Sydney courts.

Dolgopolov, currently World No. 55 in the Emirates ATP Rankings after going as high as No. 13 in 2012, didn’t face a single break point en route to the straight-sets win, setting up a quarter-final clash with defending champion and home favourite Bernard Tomic on Thursday night.

Bryans Upset In Quarter-finals
Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan, the top-seeded duo and two-time defending champions, made their earliest exit from the Apia International Sydney since 2007, falling to Lukas Rosol and Joao Sousa 3-6, 6-3, 14-12. The Bryans had held an 8-3 lead in the Match Tie-break.

The American twins had reached the final in their past five Sydney appearances, winning the title in 2009 in addition to 2012 and '13. 

The Bryans weren’t the only seeds to be upset. Second seeds Leander Paes and Radek Stepanek were beaten 6-4, 6-4 by French duo Julien Benneteau and Edouard Roger-Vasselin in the first round.

In their first match together in over a year, Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic enjoyed a successful reunion as they came from a set down to beat Michael Llodra and Nicolas Mahut 2-6, 6-4, 11-9.

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