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Wawrinka Saves M.P. To Overcome Paire In Toronto

Toronto, Canada

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Swiss Stan Wawrinka prevailed in a tough opening match at the Rogers Cup in Toronto, saving one match point to defeat Frenchman Benoit Paire 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(2).

Wawrinka had fallen to his good friend last year in the third round of this ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament, and dropped a third straight set against Paire in their second-round match Tuesday night. The third seed battled back and led by a break early in the third set, only to concede his advantage in the sixth game.

The Swiss fought off a match point at 4-5, 30/40, with an ace. Paire countered by saving two break points in the following game, but could not hold off Wawrinka in the end. Wawrinka, who had not lost a decisive set tie-break since May 2012, converted on his first match point opportunity to clinch the victory after two hours and four minutes. 

Wawrinka will play the winner between No. 16 seed Fabio Fognini and Kevin Anderson for a place in the quarter-finals. He had achieved his best Rogers Cup result three years ago in Montreal after defeating Anderson in the third round.

Frenchman Gilles Simon also rallied for victory in a late match Tuesday, finishing strongly to defeat Austrian Dominic Thiem 3-6, 6-4, 6-0 in one hour and 39 minutes. The 20-year-old Thiem, the youngest player in the Top 50 of the Emirates ATP Rankings, had reached his first ATP World Tour final last week in Kitzbuhel.

Simon, a former semi-finalist, snapped a five-match losing streak in Canada. He will face Spaniard Tommy Robredo, the No. 17 seed, in the second round.

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