Garcia-Lopez Defeats Anderson, Muller reaches Quarterfinals At Estoril Open 2015 Thursday
Manuel Traquete for Tennis Atlantic
Thursday at the Portugal Open saw the end of the round of 16. After the #1 seed Feliciano Lopez went out in his first match yesterday, today the #2 seed of the tournament Kevin Anderson followed the same path, losing in 3 sets against a very in-form Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, who’s still in the hunt for a second consecutive ATP title. Anderson’s huge serve proved insufficient as the Spaniard dominated the rallies all throughout the match, moving the big South African around the court with ease for the most part and exposing his movement.
Garcia-Lopez d. Anderson 6-4 3-6 6-1
Garcia-Lopez will now take on Borna Coric, who prevailed in a titanic duel with Rui Machado under the lights on Center Court. With both players lacking the power – on both serve and groundstrokes – to hit through the court and finish points quickly, the match featured consistently long and physically grueling rallies. Machado, spurred on by an enthusiastic home crowd, played well above his ranking for the first 2 sets, often prevailing in those lengthy baseline exchanges with Coric and playing some absolutely inspired points late in the second set to force a decider. In the third set though Machado cracked physically and started getting late to balls and piling up to errors; despite his age, Coric is far more used to matches of this intensity than Machado and that showed in the decider. The Croatian is now only a win away from breaking into the world’s top 50 in the ATP rankings. This match also featured one of the worst overrules ever seen by Fergus Murphy late in the second set.
Coric d. Machado 6-4 5-7 6-1
In the morning, Pablo Carreno Busta secured a quarterfinal spot with an easy win over lucky loser David Vega Hernandez, who replaced Tommy Robredo in the main draw. Busta will now face Gilles Muller in the quarterfinals, after the Luxemburgian eked out a win over 2010 and 2011 Estoril champion Albert Montanes, who had 3 match points, one of them on his own serve. It was a roller-coaster of a match, with Montanes taking the first set, but then Muller dominating the proceedings with his huge serve and excellent net play, barely getting troubled on serve at all until he had to step up to the plate and serve out the match at 5*-4 in the decider. Muller failed to continue his serve dominance in that game and made a few errors off the ground to get broken back; in the tiebreak, it looked like Montanes’s match at 6-4, but Muller saved the first match point on his serve with a volley that clipped the line and then Montanes double faulted on his second match point. He’d get a third match point, but it was once again saved by an incredibly accurate volley from Muller, who went on to take his first match point to secure a rare clay quarterfinal appearance.
Carreno Busta d. Hernandez 6-1 6-2
Muller d. Montanes 4-6 6-3 7-6(7)