Monday, March 14, 2011
Somdev sets up clash against Nadal
India's Somdev Devvarman won the last four points of his third-round match to prevail against Belgian Xavier Malisse 6-1, 3-6, 7-6(5) in two hours and advance to a fourth round ecnounter against world no. 1 Rafael Nadal at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, California.
The 26-year-old Devvarman is making his third main draw appearance at an ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament, and defeated Adrian Mannarino and No. 19 seed Marcos Baghdatis in the first two rounds.
Devvarman is a two-time NCAA singles champion with the University of Virginia. He defeated John Isner in the 2007 final, and won the title again the following year. He reached his first tour-level final last month at the SA Tennis Open in Johannesburg (l. to Anderson).
Nadal swept past Ryan Sweeting with the loss of four games, defeating the American qualifier 6-3, 6-1 in 68 minutes. The Spaniard, who broke Sweeting four times from seven chances in Monday’s match, had also beaten the 23 year old in January at the Australian Open.
“I didn't play really impressive, but I played solid,” said Nadal, who has conceded just 11 points on serve through his first two matches. “I didn't have big mistakes. I think today the more positive thing is I finished much better than the beginning of the match. In general, I’m happy with the serve, happy with the backhand. Forehand is always my best shot, and I need to be aggressive to have good chances to be in the right position to have a good tournament.”
This week's performance will now see Devvarman climb to a new career-best ranking of around 72 in the world. His previous best ranking was no. 79 achieved last month following his result in Johannesburg
Source: ATP World Tour