Seventh seeded Ivo Klec of Slovakia saved a match point in a nervy third set tie-break on his way to a hard fought 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 win over Russian qualifier Alexander Zhurbin to reach the quarter-finals of the Cambodian $10,000 ITF Futures for the GLF Cham Prasidh Cup at the National Training Center yesterday.
Klec, 33, whose 13th career singles title at this level came at the Kuwait F2 this year, made a superb net approach to deny the Russian left hander the crucial point that would have given him a big win. The Slovak then produced a deep forehand to put his much younger rival out of stride and out of the pre-quarters.
There was an interesting three-set battle involving two qualifiers on Court 3. The hard-hitting Wichaya Trongcharoeunchaikul of Thailand saw a stoic Soon Jae Cho of South Korea doubling his effort after losing the first set.
The Korean’s splendid rearguard action began midway in the second set and he kept tightening his grip as the match wore on to complete a 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 win.
But for another South Korean, life was hard on Court 1. Up against the tournament’s top seeded Tsung Hua Yang of Taiwan, Hyun Woo-nam, who had beaten Cambodian Davis Cupper Mam Phalkun without conceding a single game in the first round, found the going real tough from the outset.
The top seed breezed through his second round 6-0, 6-2 to be the first to make the last eight, the same stage he was beaten last week in the Ford Cup by Thailand’s Danai Udomchoke.
Sixth seeded Josh Goodall of Great Britain came through a first set tie break against Taiwan’s Chieu Fu Wang before settling down to play an exquisite second set for a 7-6, 6-3 verdict.
India’s Ramkumar Ramanathan got past Soichiro Moritani of Japan 6-3, 7-5.
In other pre-quarter-final matches, second seeded Hiroki Kondo beat his compatriot Takashi Saito 6-0, 5-7, 6-0, third seeded Robin Kern of Germany, who made an early exit last week, served his way to a 6-1, 6-4 win over Robin Olin of Sweden while Yusuke Watanuki of Japan got past Colin Van Beem of Netherlands 6-2, 7-6.
Today’s quarter-finals playing from 9:30am sees Tsung Hua Yang face Josh Goodall, Ramkumar Ramanathan up against Soong Jae Cho, Yusuke Watanuki meet Robin Kern and Ivo Klec battle with Hiroki Kondo.
In the second round of the men’s doubles yesterday, Cambodia’s Bun Kenny and Dominik Hrbaty of Slovakia failed to convert four match points in the super tie-break and went down to the Taiwanese pair of Tsung Hua Yang and Chieu Fu Wang 2-6, 6-4, 11-9.