Race to quarterfinals leads to second round upset in Aptos

Tommy Haas

APTOS, August 14, 2015

The bottom half of the draw was in action on Thursday for the second round matches at the US-$ 100,000 Comerica Bank Challenger in Aptos.

A service break early on in the first set allowed former world No. 2 Tommy Haas to secure a fairly quick lead against No. 127 Mathew Ebden of Austrailia. Haas’ depth and placement had Ebden on his back foot for most of the time up until 3-1 in the second set.

Ebden gained momentum and clawed his way back to win the second set in a tiebreak. The Aussie rose to the occasion by tightening up his footwork and preparation, combatting his opponent’s aggressive tactics. The two stayed on serve in the third set until Ebden broke Haas at 3-3. Ebden clinched the match, upsetting Haas with a 6-4 victory in the third.

Tomorrow Ebden will take on American Bjorn Fratangelo, who currently holds the lead in the U.S. Open Wild Card Challenge. No. 4 seed, Fratangelo is also feeling confident in his game as he advances to the quarterfinals. Big serves and even bigger risks defined the match between 22 year-old Fratangelo and 19 year-old, Swede, Elias Ymer earlier this afternoon. Strong winds did not make it easy for either to find their groove, but the power from both players was unmistakable. Despite some adversity, Fratangelo was stoked to say that he gained some revenge today, referencing his loss to Ymer the last time the two met on the court.

“Today my biggest thing was trying to go forehand to forehand with him and I think it worked well in the second set. I took it from him and executed my game plan the way I wanted to,” said Fratangelo.

Tomorrow, No. 1 seed, Australian, John Millman will face 21 year-old Taro Daniel in the feature match at 6 p.m. Daniel is an American-born Japanese tennis player who does his training in Valencia, Spain. He has won two Challenger titles this year and at No. 110 he is moments away from breaking the top hundred. Daniel’s father grew up in Aptos and so far he has had a sizable fan base this week at Seascape.

At the beginning of last summer Millman’s ranking fell to No. 1,193 after an unfortunate shoulder injury in 2013. He broke the top hundred and is now ranked No. 84, cruising through his first two rounds here in Aptos.


Singles – Second Round

[2] M. Jaziri (TUN) d G. Clezar (BRA) 63 36 63

[4] B. Fratangelo (USA) d E. Ymer (SWE) 63 64

[6] M. Ebden (AUS) d [WC] T. Haas (GER) 26 76(5) 64

[7] A. Krajicek (USA) d [Q] M. Zverev (GER) 63 64

Doubles – Quarterfinals

[1] C. Guccione (AUS) / A. Sitak (NZL) d [LL] R. Gonzales (PHI) / D. Walsh (GBR) 63 64

[2] A. Krajicek (USA) / N. Monroe (USA) d [Q] M. Copil (ROU) / A. Rublev (RUS) 63 16 10-7

K. Khachanov (RUS) / E. Ymer (SWE) d [3] D. O’Brien (RSA) / R. Roelofse (RSA) 62 26 10-8