2012 ATP Atlanta Day 2 Recap
Steen Kirby, TennisEastCoast.com
In 2nd round qualifying action, all of the seeds once again advanced, meaning all the 3rd round qualifying action will be between seeded players. 4 of the remaining 8 will make the main draw.
Ruben Bemelmans started it off once again with a 6-1 7-5 win over Lukas Dlouhy. Dlouhy played a flashy style of tennis, coming to the net very often but Bemelmans kept connecting on his passing shots and broke Dlouhy for a 2nd time in the set, at the end of what was a much more competitive 2nd set to win the match.
Ricardas Beranakis overpowered UGA’s Drake Bernstein 6-4 6-1 for his 2nd win in the qualifiers over a UGA player and Tim Smyczek played an entertaining match against Olivier Sanjous of Haiti. Smyczek would win 7-5 6-3, but struggled to close out a cramping Sanjous in the 2nd set, as Sanjous did his very best to slow the time before points and extend the match along with getting in Smyczek’s head. He was actually playing very well against the athletic Smyczek and broke to start the 2nd set but once the cramping started he could only muddle his way through. Sanjous also played a long game in the 2nd in which Smyczek had about 10 break points, and was broken down 1-5, but reeled off a couple of games late until Smyczek served it out.
Sergei Bubka beat Catalin Gard 6-4 7-6 and Ricardo Mello dispatched Zimbabwe’s Mbonisi Ndimande 6-4 6-2. Alex Kuznetsov whipped the ball around against Luca Margaroli, winning 6-2 6-0 in the late afternoon. Ricardo Hocevar also beat Frenchman Olivier Charroin 6-4 7-5.
The match of the day was South Africa’s Rik De Voest against Georgia Tech’s Kevin King, a local favorite. De Voest won his second 3 set match of the qualifying rounds and again survived against a tenacious college player and some engaged fans, 6-7 7-6 6-4. The match went nearly 3 hours and King, who played very well most of the match, had a chance to close out De Voest in a 2nd set tiebreak but De Voest grabbed the set and later went on to break King and serve the match out to the disappointment of the fans. Both guys served very well and breaks were hard to come by.
The final qualifying matches, which will be tomorrow at 1 before the 1st round main draw action, are Bemelmans vs. Hocevar, Berankis vs. De Voest, Bubka vs. Smyczek and Mello vs. Kuznetsov.