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Ginepri, Isner To Face Off In Atlanta

Atlanta, U.S.A.

Smyczek© BB&T Atlanta OpenTim Smyczek dropped just two games in his first-round match.

Georgia’s Robby Ginepri set a second-round clash with top seed and defending champion John Isner after recording his first tour-level win in more than a year on Tuesday at the BB&T Atlanta Open.

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The 31 year old finished strongly against Ukraine’s Sergiy Stakhovsky, 7-6(3), 3-6, 6-0, as he converted all three of his break point chances in the decisive set. It marked Ginepri’s first match win in ATP World Tour main draw action since reaching the Houston quarter-finals in April 2013.

"If I can get a streak again, so be it, but I'm just trying to take one day at a time and enjoy it," said Ginepri. 

The former World No. 15 will take a 1-2 FedEx ATP Head2Head record into his match against Isner, with his 6’10” countryman claiming their most recent encounter at the 2011 US Open.

Isner, who played collegiate tennis at the University of Georgia and said Tuesday he “feels very much at home here”, has a 12-3 record at this ATP World Tour 250 tournament. 

“This tournament is hugely critical for me to set up the rest of my summer,” added Isner, who will play at each stop of the Emirates Airline US Open Series. “I have done well in this tournament in the past and it’s set me up very well after that, so I’m looking to do the same this year.” 

Americans Jack Sock and Tim Smyczek both cruised through their first-round matches earlier Tuesday. Sock defeated Colombian Alejandro Gonzalez 6-2, 6-4 in 66 minutes, while Smyczek needed just 53 minutes to complete a 6-0, 6-2 rout of fellow American Ryan Harrison.

"It's not easy to beat anybody by that scoreline at this level, even if he is hurt," said Smyczek. "He's a great player and, even though he's not moving well, I had a lot of respect for him. I'm happy with the way I took care of my side of the court." 

The 21-year-old Sock, who reached his first ATP World Tour semi-final two weeks ago in Newport, will next face 349th-ranked qualifier Michael Venus of New Zealand. "I think the confidence is definitely carrying over through all these tournaments," he said. 

Smyczek, 26, will meet eighth-seeded Marinko Matosevic. The Australian also recorded a 6-0, 6-2 victory Tuesday, dismissing last week’s Bogota semi-finalist Victor Estrella Burgos in 43 minutes.

Dutch lucky loser Thiemo de Bakker will face No. 2 seed and returning finalist Kevin Anderson in the second round after defeating Canadian qualifier Steven Diez 6-1, 6-2.

Sixth seed Denis Istomin also advanced, defeating American lucky loser Rajeev Ram 6-1, 6-4. He next meets Lukas Lacko, a 6-2, 7-5 winner over the University of Georgia's Nathan Pasha, who was making his ATP World Tour debut.

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