Mahut Aces Double Duty In 's-Hertogenbosch
Second seed Bernard Tomic also a winner
Two-time champion Nicolas Mahut got the better of his friend Paul-Henri Mathieu for the first time in their fourth meeting, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4 in one hour and 46 minutes on Wednesday at the Ricoh Open. He is now into the quarter-finals. The pair had dined out together on Saturday, when Mahut learned he would become the new No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Doubles Rankings. Read Tribute
However, an unforced error months prior had nearly cost Mahut an opportunity to play singles this week.
“I almost had to play qualies because I forgot to enter the tournament before the six-week deadline,” Mahut revealed. “I’ve only forgotten to do this twice in my career. The last time was 2000. I went online to check the entry list and could not believe I was not on it. So I called the tournament director and I am really happy I got a wild card.”
The Frenchman was also a winner on the doubles court on Wednesday. Mahut partnered Rohan Bopanna to a 6-1, 6-4 win over wild cards Guillermo Garcia-Lopez and Robin Haase after recovering from his singles match.
Second seed Bernard Tomic earned his first ATP World Tour win on Dutch soil after dismissing Brit Aljaz Bedene 6-4, 6-3 in the second round. The Aussie saved three break points and landed 67 per cent of first serves.
“It’s a beautiful tournament,” Tomic said. “There’s a lot of green, it’s very relaxing and I am happy to be here. I’ve had my best results on grass and it is probably best suited to my game.”
Young American Stefan Kozlov scored his biggest ATP World Tour victory to date in the second round, upsetting fourth seed Steve Johnson 6-3, 6-4 to advance to the final eight. The 18-year-old Kozlov saved seven of nine break points faced and will next face countryman Querrey.
“I'm a little bit in shock right now. Obviously I haven't played too much at this level so I’m really excited and really happy,” Kozlov said. “I was actually really calm throughout the whole match. I was a little unlucky serving out the match and that was one of the toughest games I've ever played in my life. So I'm really relieved and very excited.”