Thursday, July 11, 2013

Tommy Haas Edges Gulbis in Stuttgart 2013

Tommy Haas, the 1999 runner-up, recorded his third straight victory over Ernests Gulbis, on German soil, on Thursday at the MercedesCup.
Top seed Haas advanced to his ninth ATP World Tour quarter-final (or better) this season with a 6-0, 3-6, 6-4 victory in just over 90 minutes. Haas, 35, lost nine points in the first set.

"It was very nice to play in front of a great crowd," Haas told "It is never easy to play Gulbis again in Germany – the third time in a row on German soil in the second round. It just came down to a few points here and there, so I am happy to have advanced to another quarter-final."

Haas will next play fifth seed Fabio Fognini, who beat Leonardo Mayer 6-1, 6-3.

Fourth seed Benoit Paire will have to overcome a 0-3 FedEx ATP Head2Head record against Victor Hanescu on Friday if he is to reach his fourth ATP World Tour semi-final of the season.

Paire, one of 13 Frenchmen in the Top 100 of the Emirates ATP Rankings, reached the quarter-finals Thursday on his third appearance in Stuttgart when he defeated Nikolay Davydenko 6-3, 6-1.

"It is always difficult to play after Wimbledon on clay courts," Paire told "It was a very good match and I am happy to have beaten Davydenko in two sets. I have never beaten Hanescu in three matches, but I think I have made a lot of progress this year."

Hanescu, the 2009 runner-up, converted three of his four break point opportunities to beat Thomaz Bellucci 6-1, 6-4. So far this year, Hanescu has already advanced to two clay-court quarter-finals at the BRD Nastase Tiriac Trophy in Bucharest (l. to F. Mayer) and the Portugal Open in Oeiras (l. to Ferrer).

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