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Salisbury & Ram lose No 1 spot hope

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Seeds topple early, including Tsitsipas.

Three seeds were eliminated on the second day of the Paris Masters including the second favourite for the title who is preparing for the defence of the one he won at the ATP Finals last year, which is scheduled to start on November 15 at the O2 in London.

He was just creating a lot of opportunities from his forehand side and doing a lot of damage from there. His serve was very consistent Stefanos Tsitsipas

Stefanos Tsitsipas lost a very tight second round contest with Frenchman Ugo Humbert 7-6(4) 6-7(6) 7-6(3) in the closing stages of Tuesday’s Bercy schedules and admitted that a prior injury was starting t make itself felt again.

“Right now, I don’t know. I really don’t know,” Tsitsipas, the world number six, replied when asked after his match, on what his chances of a successful defence at the O2 were.

“During the second set my Roland Garros injury came back, and it wasn’t as bad as at the French Open, but it kind of had me on the edge of things, and I wasn’t sure if that’s good for me to be out there.

“But that’s not an excuse, for sure. I still fought and gave my best out there, despite this thing that I had on court. I’m sad, for sure.”

Tsitsipas said he picked up the leg injury when playing the French Open semi-final against world number one Novak Djokovic played earlier this month.

Unfortunately for the Greek star, that proved a bit of a hindrance for him during the decider.

“He was just creating a lot of opportunities from his forehand side and doing a lot of damage from there. His serve was very consistent,” said Tsitsipas commenting on the actual match.

“I’m super happy, super proud of myself,” said Humbert following his second career win over a top 10 player. “I was mentally very strong to win this match against Tsitsipas, one of the best players in the world.”
Humbert missed three match point chances late in the second set and led with an early break in the third to hang on for the victory.

“It was very, very hard at the end of the second set because I was a little bit stressed and tight to finish the match,” Humbert added. “I tried to play one by one, gave what I can.”

Another seed to fall was Italian Matteo Berrettini’s who also sent down followinga tight match with Amerivan qualifier Marcos Giron. The seventh seed lost 7-6(3) 6-7(0) 7-5 and awaits the winner of a cash between the French wildcard Pierre-Hughes Herbert and the Milos Raonic, the big Canadian seeded 10.

The loss for Berrettini means he can’t qualify for the O2 and leaves Diego Schwartzman in the driving seat for the final place, the Argentine, seeded six, plays Richard Gasquet in his opening match in Paris, the Frenchman having blitzed Taylor Fritz of the US 6-0 3-6 6-3.

The only player who could pip the Argentine player from qualifying is Pablo Carreno Busta of Spain, who keeps his own hopes alive by making the third round with a win over Jan-Lennard Struff of German 6-4 7-6(6).

The third seed to fall was Belgium’s David which wasn’t surprising as the eighth seed has had a run of poor in recent weeks. He lost the Slovak Norbert Gombos, a qualifier, 6-4 7-6(6).

British interest was also brought to an end at the first hurdle, by Stan Wawrinka who ousted Dan Evans 6-3 7-6(2) to maintains his dominance of the Birmingham player in what was their fifth encounter with the Swiss winning all of them.

“I am really happy with my level today. I was serving and moving well,” Wawrinka said, adding: “I was happy to be back here in Paris, even without crowd it’s always a great tournament.

“We are lucky to still have some tournaments going, so I’m trying to enjoy them as much as possible.”



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