STARNBERG, November 28, 2020
Three Brazilians have booked their place in the semi-finals of the $52,080 Sao Paulo Open Tennis held at the Clube Hipico Santo Amaro. No. 7 seed Joao Menezes ended the good run of local teenager Matheus Pucinelli de Almeida, winning 6-2, 6-2 in Friday’s quarterfinals.
Menezes broke the 19-year-old’s serve six times to seal victory in one hour and 22 minutes. “The match was tougher than the scoreboard tells. I did not serve well and I felt a bit of pressure to play a good match. Matheus was coming from a series of good results in the tournament, so I started a little more tense than normal, but in the end I managed to cope with it well and it was a good win,” Menezes said.
The World No. 204 from Itajai, champion of the 2019 Samarkand Challenger in Uzbekistan, will next take on No. 6 seed Frederico Ferreira Silva from Portugal, who defeated Camilo Ugo Carabelli of Argentina 7-5, 6-2 in just under two hours of play. Menezes lost to Ferreira Silva in this year’s second round of qualifying at Roland Garros in Paris.
Sakamoto enjoys atmosphere
In the top half of the draw, Pedro Sakamoto of Brazil fought past Frenchman Maxime Janvier 6-2, 3-6, 6-1. The 27-year-old outpointed his rival 93-76 after two hours and nine minutes. “It is a very good atmosphere to play at home with spectators attending the matches. I am managing to play very well this week, tactically disciplined and I think this is being the key to the success,” said Sakamoto. There is free admission to the public in Sao Paulo. However, access is restricted to 200 spectators due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and in accordance with all health and safety protocols of the ATP.
Sakamoto will face compatriot Felipe Meligeni Rodrigues Alves in the semi-finals. The 22-year-old from Campinas knocked off No. 5 Dmitry Popko from Kazakhstan 2-6, 6-3, 6-3. The encounter lasted two hours and 14 minutes.
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