Kwon Weathers 33 Aces, Upsets Raonic In New York
South Korean Soonwoo Kwon scored the biggest win of his career on Wednesday at the New York Open, overcoming 33 aces from second-seeded Canadian Milos Raonic to prevail 7-6(4), 6-7(4), 6-4 and reach the quarter-finals.
”I’m really happy to win a tough match against Raonic,” Kwon said in his on-court interview. “He played well. It was a great match today.”
The 22-year-old Kwon has climbed more than 150 spots in the FedEx ATP Rankings over the past 12 months and currently sits at No. 84. He’s through to his second tour-level quarter-final of the season, having also accomplished the feat last week in Pune.
Read More: 5 Things To Know About Kwon
Both players traded comfortable service holds throughout the first set to force a tie-break. An errant forehand from Raonic at 4/4 gave Kwon a mini-break and enabled him to grab the early advantage. Raonic held triple break point on Kwon’s serve at 4-4 and 5-5 in the second set, but couldn’t convert any of his six opportunities.
The second-set tie-break also came down to one key point, with Kwon missing a forehand volley at 3/4 to hand a mini-break to the Canadian. Raonic ripped a swinging forehand volley winner on his first set point to send the match into a decider.
A loose forehand error from Raonic at 1-1 in the final set gave Kwon the first break of the night. The slight lead was all Kwon needed and he comfortably served out the match to prevail in two hours and 25 minutes. He awaits the winner of eighth-seeded Brit Kyle Edmund and German Dominik Koepfer.
Fourth-seeded Frenchman Ugo Humbert enjoyed a nearly perfect start to his week in New York, winning 11 straight games to race past American Marcos Giron 6-1, 6-0 in the evening session. The 21-year-old sits at a career-high ranking of No. 43 after capturing his maiden ATP Tour title last month in Auckland (d. Paire).
”I’m very happy about my performance today,” Humbert said. “I’m satisfied to not spend too much time on the court.”
Humbert will now turn his attention to a quarter-final battle with sixth seed and #NextGenATP Serbian Miomir Kecmanovic, who defeated Italian qualifier Paolo Lorenzi 6-3, 6-3 in a battle of youth against experience. Kecmanovic broke the 38-year-old four times and won 81 per cent (21/26) of his first-serve points. He leads Humbert 2-0 in their ATP Head2Head series, scoring second-round victories last year in Antalya and Atlanta.
Italian Andreas Seppi defeated American Steve Johnson 7-6(4), 6-3 to move into the quarter-finals. Seppi fought back from 3-5 in the first set and went on a seven-game run en route to his first quarter-final of the year. The 35-year-old ended last season with a Top 10 victory over Karen Khachanov to reach the semi-finals in Moscow.