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Top-seed Marin Cilic makes Maharashtra Open semis; Bops-Jeevan knocked out in doubles

By Aravind
Marin Cilic of Croatia entertains the crowd after his win over Pierre-Hugues Herbert in the Maharashtra Open on Thursday

Pune, January 4: Top seed Marin Cilic advanced to the semifinals of the Tata Open Maharashtra with a victory in straight sets 6-3, 6-2 over eighth-seed Pierre-Hugues Herbert at the Mhalunge Balewadi Stadium in Pune on Thursday (January 4). He will face Gilles Simon, who beat Ricardo Ojeda Lara of Spain 6-2, 6-3.

While doubles defending champions Rohan Bopanna and Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan were knocked out of the competition as they lost in straight sets 3-6, 5-7 to the French duo of Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Simon. However, the other Indian pairing of Yuki Bhambri and Divij Sharan, produced a great performance to knock-out the first-seed pairing of Robert Lindstedt and Franko Skugor beating them in three sets 7-5, 2-6, 10-6.

World No 6 Cilic came into the quarterfinal after beating India's Ramkumar Ramanathan in straight sets on Wednesday. The Croat started the match aggressively, showing credence in his serving and returning well to keep the 26-year-old Herbert at bay in the first set.

Cilic served five aces in the first set and made it difficult for the Frenchman to win points on the return. He showed why he is the top-seed at this year's tournament as he won 20 out of the possible 25 service points that resulted in him wrapping up the first set 6-3. It was a difficult ask for the eighth-seed Herbert to match the level of his opponent but he tried nonetheless.

In the second set, Herbert tried to make things work for himself but his second serve let him down as Cilic won eight out of the nine points on the Frenchman's second serve.

The 2014 US Open winner outclassed Herbert towards the latter stages of the second set and won the match in straight sets 6-3, 6-2.

In another quarterfinal, Simon kept his pre-season form going as he beat Spain's Ojeda Lara in straight sets 6-2, 6-3. The 89th-ranked Simon had knocked out defending champion Roberto Bautista Agut in the second round and maintained his rhythm as he won 89 per cent points off his first service. It was a difficult outing for the young Spaniard as he failed to save four out of the nine break points on offer to Simon.

It was only a matter of time in the end as Simon ran away with both the sets 6-2, 6-3 and qualified for the semifinal of the men's singles competition in Pune.


Men's singles (quarterfinals)

Marin Cilic (CRO) bt Pierre-Hugues Herbert (FRA) 6-3, 6-2

Gilles Simon (FRA) bt Ricardo Ojeda Lara (ESP) 6-2, 6-3

Kevin Anderson (RSA) bt Mikhail Kukushkin (KAZ) 6-7(3/7), 6-4, 6-

Benoit Paire (FRA) bt Robin Haase (NED) 7-5, 2-6, 6-3

Men's doubles (Quarterfinals)

Yuki Bhambri (IND)/Divij Sharan (IND) bt Robert Lindstedt (SWE)/Franko Skugor (CRO) 7-5, 2-6, 10-6

Robin Haase (NED)/Matwe Middelkoop (NED) bt Adil Shamasdin (CAN)/Neal Skupski (GBR) 6-3, 7-5

Pierre-Hugues Herbert (FRA)/Gilles Simon (FRA) bt Rohan Bopanna (IND)/Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan (IND) 6-3, 7-5

Source: Press release

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Story first published: Thursday, January 4, 2018, 19:52 [IST]
Other articles published on Jan 4, 2018
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