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IVASHKA CLAIMS CAREER BEST WIN

Posted By Jedd Zetzer  
01/05/2021
11:00 AM

Eight Australians were in action overnight, but the biggest story came out of the BMW Open in Germany, where World No.107 Ilya Ivashka upset No.1 seed Alexander Zverev.

27 year old Belarusian Ilya Ivashka claimed a career best win overnight at the BMW Open in Munich, coming from a set behind to upstage No.1 seed and World No.6 Alexander Zverev. 

In what was a see-sawing encounter, it was Ivashka who drew first blood, breaking Zverev in the third service game of the match. Ivashka carried the lead until he was made to serve for the first set at 5-4, but was unable to consolidate. Zverev broke back and stole the set 7-6(5).

As the second set progressed, it was Zverev who broke Ivashka to serve for the match. It appeared the Belarusian's opportunity was well and truly gone, and it would be another relatively straight forward victory for Zverev, who was aiming to capture his 15th tour level title in Munich. 

However, Ivashka, who is ranked over 100 spots lower than the World No.6, had other ideas.

The Belarusian, who achieved a career high ranking of 80 back in 2019 refused to give up. With Zverev serving for the match, if Ivashka was going to win, he needed to strike now. And that he did. He earned himself a break point, but Zverev saved it with a strong first serve, which Ivashka was unable to return. Ivashka then earned another break point, and was stunningly gifted the break when Zverev double-faulted. From that point onwards, the 27 year old never looked back. He held and broke Zverev once again to send the match into a deciding set. 

The momentum had well and truly shifted and Ivashka ran away with the match, claiming the deciding set 6-3, to book his place in the semifinals of the BMW Open, where he will now face another German - the seventh seed, Jan-Lennard Struff. 

On the other side of the draw, Australian John Millman was in action against Norwegian Casper Ruud. This quarterfinal, along with the other quarterfinal featuring Nikoloz Basilashvili and Norbert Gombos were suspended due to inclement weather. 

Millman will need to execute a flawless performance if he is to come back against the second seed Ruud, after he dropped the first set 3-6 before weather halted play. 

Basilashvili holds a 5-4 lead over Gombos in what is a tight contest. 

In Estoril, the Spaniard's proved too strong for the Frenchmen in the top half of the draw.

Corentin Moutet was unable to consolidate an impressive win against No.1 seed Denis Shapovalov, the Frenchman going down to seventh seed Albert Ramos-Vinolas 4-6, 3-6. 

Ramos-Vinolas will face fellow Spaniard Alejandro Davidovich Fokina for a spot in the final, after Davidovich Fokina claimed a 6-4, 6-4 win over another Frenchman - third seed Ugo Humbert.

In the bottom half of the draw, sixth seed Marin Cilic advanced after Kevin Anderson retired with a left adductor injury, after dropping the first set 6-7(7). Cilic will face Cam Norrie, who continued his hot form with a 3-6, 7-5, 6-3 win over No.2 seed Cristian Garin. 

On the WTA Tour, round one action continued at the Mutua Madrid Open overnight. 

Australian Ajla Tomljanovic was no match for Kazakh Elena Rybakina, going down 4-6, 0-6 in just 63 minutes. 

11th seed Jennifer Brady claimed a strong 6-2, 6-4 win over wildcard Venus Williams, in a battle of the American's.

In a tight battle, 12th seed Victoria Azarenka prevailed, with a 7-5, 3-6, 6-1 win over Ekaterina Alexandrova.

Sixth seed Karolina Pliskova survived a scare, coming from a set behind to defeat rising star Cori Gauff 5-7, 6-3, 6-2. 

16th seed Maria Sakkari recovered from a sluggish start to defeat Amanda Anisimova 0-6, 6-1, 6-4, whilst seeds Aryna Sabalenka, Elise Mertens, Simona Halep and Naomi Osaka all advanced with straight sets wins. 

On the ATP Challenger Tour, it was a bittersweet day for Aussie Marc Polmans. 

Polmans was ousted in his singles quarterfinal in Ostrava, going down 4-6, 2-6 to third seed Benjamin Bonzi, who has reached his fifth Challenger semi for the year. 

However, Polmans was back on the winners list shortly after, advancing to the doubles final with partner Sergiy Stakhovsky, defeating Czech pair Lukas Rosol and Zdenek Kolar 3-6, 6-2, 10-7.

In Rome, Thanasi Kokkinakis, who played relatively well was unable to advance past the quarterfinals. The Aussie squandered two match points, going down to eighth seed Alessandro Giannessi 5-7, 6-3, 5-7 in an incredibly tight contest which lasted three hours and six minutes. 

Matt Reid was also eliminated, going down in the doubles quarterfinals with French partner Albano Olivetti 6-7(6), 6-4, 5-10 to Argentinian duo Guido Andreozzi and Guillermo Duran. 

On the ITF World Tennis Tour, 19 year old Olivia Gadecki advanced to the semifinals in Antalya, claiming her 14th win from 18 matches on the ITF tour this year, defeating Belarusian Kristina Dmitruk 3-6, 6-7(7).

Arina Rodionova and partner Anna Danilina advanced to the doubles final in Charlottesville after their opponents Harriet Dart and Kristie Ahn withdrew.

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