Tennis

Tsonga pulls off another upset, beats Murray in Toronto

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The Canadian Press
8/8/2014 6:22:59 PM
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TORONTO -- Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France reached the semifinals at the Rogers Cup on Friday with a 7-6 (5), 4-6, 6-4 victory over Britain's Andy Murray while Canadian Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic of Serbia advanced in men's doubles play.

Tsonga, the No. 13 seed, picked up a break to go ahead 4-3 in the third set en route to his second straight upset win. The eighth-seeded Murray had won nine of 10 previous meetings against Tsonga, who reached the quarter-finals with a convincing victory over top-seeded Novak Djokovic.

"This week is kind of rewards for me," Tsonga said. "To play like this, to beat two guys in the top 10. It's good and I hope it will continue."

Tsonga will make his seventh career appearance in an ATP World Tour Masters 1000 semifinal on Saturday. He will play seventh-seeded Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria, who defeated South Africa's Kevin Anderson 5-7, 7-5, 7-6 (6).

Sixth-seeded Milos Raonic of Thornhill, Ont., was scheduled to play on Friday night against Spain's Feliciano Lopez while No. 2 Roger Federer of Switzerland was to meet No. 5 David Ferrer of Spain.

Tsonga, who had an 18-7 edge in aces over Murray, needed two hours 18 minutes to complete the victory on a warm, sunny afternoon at Rexall Centre. The Frenchman won 83 per cent of points when his first serve was in.

"I was able to serve maybe 220 (km/h) all match and for me it's something great when I'm serving like this," he said. "I'm able to play good tennis."

Murray said it was a much faster-paced match than his tournament opener against Nick Kyrgios. The two-time Rogers Cup champ had reached the quarter-finals on a walkover when Richard Gasquet withdrew due to an abdominal injury.

"Jo is a top player, he's a fantastic athlete," Murray said. "When his game is on, he's very tough to beat."

In men's doubles quarter-final play, the third-seeded duo of Nestor, from Toronto, and Zimonjic needed a match tiebreak to defeat No. 5 Julien Benneteau and Edouard Roger-Vasselin of France 2-6, 6-3, 14-12.

In other early matches, No. 4 Ivan Dodig of Croatia and Marcelo Melo of Brazil beat the seventh-seeded Spanish team of Marcel Granollers and Marc Lopez 4-6, 6-4, 10-8. The second-seeded duo of Alexander Peya of Austria and Bruno Soares of Brazil defeated Jean-Julien Rojer of the Netherlands and Romania's Horia Tecau 7-6 (4), 6-4.

Federer was the highest-seeded player left in the singles draw after three of the top four seeds were eliminated Thursday. He has won all 14 of his previous meetings against Ferrer.

Raonic, meanwhile, is coming off a tournament victory last weekend in Washington. He has a 2-1 edge on Lopez in their head-to-head battles.

The 23-year-old Canadian has six career wins on the ATP Tour but is still looking for his first Masters 1000 title. He was pushed to three sets in his first two matches this week at the US$3.78-million tournament.

Raonic reached the final at last year's Rogers Cup in Montreal before losing to Rafael Nadal. The Spaniard is not back to defend his title due to a wrist injury.

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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