Experienced Spaniard and 5th seed of the TEB BNP Paribas Istanbul Open, Marcel Granollers saved four set points in the second to defeat local favorite Cem Ilkel 6-1, 7-6 to move into last 16.
World no.54 Marcel Granollers kicked off his Istanbul campaign with a straight-sets win over Turkey’s 20-year-old wildcard Cem Ilkel despite a struggling second set at the Garanti Koza Arena.
After grabbing the first set breaking his opponent’s serve twice, Granollers was forced to work overtime in the second. Ilkel, who was seeking his first-ever tour-level match win, couldn’t complete the set while serving at 5-3, then missed three set points opportunities on Granollers’ serve.
Full drama on the second went on in the tie-break as well. Ilkel fended off another set point at 8/7 before Granollers finally converted his fourth chance to seal the deal. He needed 1 hour and 56 minutes to close out the match 6-1, 7-6(9) with Ilkel’s third double fault. 5th seed Granollers will next face Chung Hyeon.
1996-born NextGen player Chung had a strong performance in his Istanbul opener against the qualifier Carlos Berlocq. While leading 5-2 in the second, the game was interrupted for about two hours, but that wasn’t enough to disturb Chung’s concentration as he was victorious 6-3, 6-2.
7TH SEED DOWN
Bosnia’s Damir Dzumhur shined at the last match of Garanti Koza Arena knocking out 7th seed Teymuraz Gabashvili. Scorer of recent stunning upsets against Rafael Nadal and Tomas Berdych, ATP no.79 Dzumhur closed the day two action defeating Gabashvili 6-4, 6-2 to advance to second round.