STUTTGART, June 15, 2018
Lucas Pouille opened Friday’s Centre Court quarterfinal action in Stuttgart with a 6-4, 6-7(5), 6-3 win over Denis Istomin from Uzbekistan. The reigning MercedesCup champion fired 20 aces, saved all four break points he faced, converting two of his own to prevail after two hours and three minutes.
“It was not easy, as Denis is a great player on grass. I am very happy the way I managed to come back in the third set after losing the tie-break. I am happy to be back in the semis here,” Pouille was pleased afterwards.
“It was good to finish like this, as I found my first serve in the end.”
Pouille, who became the fifth active Frenchman to break into the Top 10 in March, has started to work with former World No. 2 Tommy Haas since the Australian Open and is confident that the partnership can raise his tennis level.
“Tommy has been on the tour for many years. He was one of the best players in the world, so he knows how to get to the top. He knows what is difficult and what you have to deal with. Obviously he also helps me with my game, many things like my serve, return and trying to be aggressive on the court. It will help me to reach the next level.”
Raonic fights past Berdych
Pouille will next face Milos Raonic. The 27-year-old Canadian fought past No. 3 Tomas Berdych 7-6(2), 7-6(1), winning his sixth encounter with the Czech in the pair’s ninth tour meeting. Raonic saved both break points he faced, hitting 24 aces in the one hour and 24 minutes encounter.
“This win is very important to me, as it was a difficult match. I didn’t have any chances to break. In the end I was a bit lucky but I am happy with the way I competed,” Raonic told after reaching the stage of the final eight for the first time since Indian Wells in March.
“I am playing well when my body is allowing me. It took me a while to get into shape after playing about one match in the last seven months.
“It’s a great pleasure to play here. I am enyoing it a lot and the support is very nice. I hope that it continues like this,” commented Raonic, who is making his debut in Stuttgart.