Fognini finds sweet spot in Rome with epic lob

18 May, 2018, 15:17 | Author: Roderick Gutierrez
  • Italian Open Alexander Zverev Joins Rafael Nadal Novak Djokovic In Third Round

Shapovalov was stretched to three sets in his opening two matches, against 15th-seeded Tomas Berdych and Robin Haase, and reached the semifinals of last week's Madrid Open.

Nadal later eased through 6-1, 6-0 against Bosnian Damir Dzumhur as he targets an eighth Rome title and first since 2013.

Wozniacki can reclaim the world number one ranking from Halep, last year's losing finalist, if the Romanian fails to reach the quarter-finals.

The 24-year-old destroyed his racket in fury as he suffered his first defeat to Italian Fabio Fognini in three meetings, sinking 6-4, 1-6, 6-3 at the Foro Italico.

The four-time Rome champion is making his way back this year after a six-month injury absence before the Australian Open, which was followed by elbow surgery.

Nadal leads Fognini 10-3 winning their last five, but Italian does have two clay wins over Rafa back in 2015.

When Thiem netted a service return two points later to end it, the White Stripes' Seven Nation Army was blasted over the stadium sound system and the crowd began singing along in an atmosphere that more closely resembled a soccer game than a tennis match.

The 16-time Grand Slam victor next takes on Canadian teenager Denis Shapovalov who dug deep in a 7-6 (7/3), 6-7 (5/7), 6-3 win over Robin Haase of the Netherlands. But with my serve, I didn't lose many points. I will play Lyon next week, and there I can adjust some things on my game.


In other seeded action, second-seeded German Alexander Zverev bested Italian wild card Matteo Berrettini 7-5, 6-2.

Belgian Goffin was leading 6-2 4-5 against fifth seed Juan Martin del Potro when the Argentine was forced to retire with what appeared to be a groin injury that throws his participation at the French Open into doubt.

Fourth-seeded Marin Cilic defeated Benoit Paire 6-3, 6-4.

Third seed Grigor Dimitrov did not have a birthday to remember as he fell 7-6 (4), 5-7, 4-6 to Kei Nishikori.

Dane Wozniacki was given a scare by Latvia's Anastasija Sevastova before closing out the match 6-2, 5-7, 6-3.

Halep plays US Open champion Sloane Stephens or seventh-seeded Caroline Garcia.

Venus Williams, who won the Rome title back in 1999 and is bidding for her 50th career title this week, got her first win on clay this season.

Important results: Women: Third round: Simona Halep w/o Madison Keys; Jelena Ostapenko bt Johanna Konta 2-6, 6-3, 6-4; Elina Svitolina bt Darya Kasatkina 0-6, 6-3, 6-2; Angelique Kerber bt Maria Sakkari 6-1, 6-1.

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