British number one Cameron Norrie, who picked up a foot injury in Rome last week, showed no signs of problems as he swept past Argentina’s Francisco Cerundolo 6-4 6-4 to reach the quarter finals of the ‘Open Parc Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes Lyon’ tournament on the banks of the river Rhone.
It’s great to be here in Lyon. I feel really good here, such a simple tournament and the people that come out to watch are really passionate about tennis -- they love it Cameron Norrie
The Briton, seeded No.1 for the ATP 250 event, required two breaks in each set to post his second-round victory after one-hour and 40-minutes in his attempt to go one better at the tournament where he reached the final in 2021 when he lost to Stefanos Tsitsipas. The current world No11, also reached the semis in 2018 and hopes another good run there will set him up nicely for the French Open starting Sunday.
“It’s great to be here in Lyon,” Norrie told the ATP website, “I feel really good here, such a simple tournament and the people that come out to watch are really passionate about tennis — they love it.
“[I had] good sensations and I really enjoyed the match for the most part. Francisco is a tricky player with a really good forehand, so I had to watch out for that.
There were some nerves there in the second set [when I was] up a break, and I kind of gave it away a little bit. I was able to break again, and he gave me a couple of loose points towards the end, so I will take those and move on.
Norrie’s opponent in the last eight is another Argentinian, Sebastian Baez, the seventh seed, who eventually overcame Germanys Oscar Otte 5-7 6-4 6-2.
It will be their first meeting and he expects a tough match form the in-form 21-year-old from Buenos Aires.
“He is having a great year, and I really liked his game when I was in Argentina doing a pre-season many years ago, so it’s nice to see him come on and it’s going to be tough,” said Norrie. “He’s won a title on the clay already this year in Estoril and he’s really enjoying his tennis. I practised with him the other day and he’s hitting the ball big off both sides, so it’s going to be a tough one.”
Fourth seed Alex de Minaur also enjoyed a successful main-draw debut in Lyon, bouncing back from losing a one-sided first set to home favourite Ugo Humbert in a 1-6 6-3 6-2 win.
In the quarter finals the 23-year-old Aussie will face Lucky Loser Yosuke Watanuki from Japan, who notched a 6-3 6-4 win over Koreas Soonwoo Kwon for his second tour-level win of the year.