Upsets highlight ATP Challenger anew

MANILA, Philippines – Upsets continue to rock the $75,000 ATP Challenger Philippine Open as Italian Gianluca Naso brought down fifth seed Kimmer Coppejans of Belgium, 6-3, 7-6 (4), in the second round at the Rizal Tennis Center Thursday.

The win sent Naso straight to the quarterfinals against the winner of the match pitting second seed Mikhail Youzhny of Russia and Jason Jung of Chinese Taipei, which was being played at press time.

Coppejans thus joined No. 1 Luca Vanni of Italy, No. 6 Thomas Fabiano of Italy and No. 8 Somdev Devvarman of India as the favorites to exit early.

Vanni fell to Swiss Marco Chiudinelli, 3-6, 6-1, 4-6,; Fabbiano lost to David Guez of France, 1-6, 6-3, 3-6, both in the second round while Devvarman fell to Oriol Roca Batalia of Spain, 5-7, 7-6 (0), 7-6 (4), in the opening round.

No. 7 Igor Sijsling and No. 3 Lukas Lacko of Slovakia restored order and trounced their respective foes to arrange a quarterfinals showdown.

Sijsling smashed Amir Wintraub of Israel, 6-2, 6-2, while Lacko outlasted Federico Gaio of Italy, 6-1, 3-6, 6-1.

In the doubles, many-time Southeast Asian Games doubles champion Sonchai and Sonchat Ratawatana of Thailand slammed Croatians Dino Marcan and Nikole Mektic, 6-4, 6-4, to barge into the semifinals.

There, the Ratawatanas will play the winner between local bet Francis Casey Alcantara and Indonesian Christopher Rungkat and Marco Chiudinelli and Lukas Lacko.

Alcantara and Rungkat made it through by pulling the rug from under top seed Ilija Bozoljac of Serbia and Andreas Siljestrom of Sweden, 4-6, 7-6 (10), 10-7, late Wednesday to register one of the biggest wins of the tournament backed by Cebuana Lhuillier's Jean Henri Lhullier, PSC and Philta.


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