UMAG, July 21, 2017
Local favourite Ivan Dodig headlined Friday’s quarterfinals action at the Plava Laguna Croatia Open, knocking out Umag’s top seed David Goffin 7-5, 6-3.
The 32-year-old wild card entry, who fell to World No. 406 in the ATP rankings in June 26, his lowest ranking since No. 425 in February 2009, won 74 per cent of his first service points and broke serve four times to secure victory in one hour and 32 minutes.
“I was feeling really good. I was trying to be aggressive right from the first point. Today was my day, everything was going my way,” Dodig told Tennis TourTalk after reaching his first semi-final since Tokyo 2013.
Dodig is making his first appearance in Umag since 2012 and focused more on doubles in recent times. “I had some physical problems. Playing singles is not my priority at the moment because I am not sure if I am able to play a full season. The last couple of years, I achieved some good doubles results and there are still some goals ahead.” The Croat will stick together with Marcel Granollers of Spain for the rest of the season.
“I was more focused on my footwork and my fitness than on Ivan,” told Goffin, who misssed the entire grass court season due to an ankle injury. “Of course Ivan played really well today. He was very aggressive. I was not surprised by his level today, as I know that he can play some really good tennis.
“This tournament was a first test how I will feel after one or two matches. I am happy that I won my first match since Roland Garros. Before coming to Umag, I had worked a lot on my ankle. It was not easy, as I had to face some tough moments. I am feeling ok now but not as good as before. I still need to spend some hours on the court.”
Goffin will next play at the Swiss Open in Gstaad and Dodig will take on #NextGenATP player Andrey Rublev. The 19-year-old from Russia entered the main draw as lucky loser and knocked out defending champion Fabio Fognini 6-7, 6-2, 7-6, gaining his first victory over the Italian in their third tour meeting.
Rublev sent down seven aces, winning 70 per cent of his first service points. The World No. 74 broke serve five times to prevail after two hours and 16 minutes. After reaching the stage of the final eight in Halle earlier this season, Rublev will appear in his first semi-final on the ATP World Tour.
“I have no words to explain it,” said Rublev. “It’s my first semi-final and I’m really happy. This match was so tough. I had to fight for every point. I had to give my all. This match was one of the toughest I’ve ever played.”
Elsewhere, Alessandro Giannessi rallied past Rogerio Dutra Silva of Brazil 6-7, 6-2, 7-5. The 27-year-old from Italy won 53 per cent of the total points played to advance to his first semi-final on the ATP World Tour.
Giannessi will face will challenge fellow Italian Paolo Lorenzi, who celebrated his first win over Czech Jiri Vesely in their third meeting. The 35-year-old Rome native won 52 per cent of the total points to secure a 1-6, 7-5, 6-3 victory in two hours and 10 minutes.
Photo Gallery (by Florian Heer)