Stan Wawrinka has won back-to-back titles at the Banque Eric Sturdza Geneva Open. But a 2017 Next Gen ATP Finals qualifier will look to knock the home favourite off his throne in the second round this year.
Jared Donaldson ousted Uzbek Denis Istomin 5-7, 6-4, 6-0 in one hour, 48 minutes, snapping a five-match losing streak to set a clash against the Swiss superstar, who is the No. 3 seed. The American pushed Wawrinka to three sets two years ago in Cincinnati in their only previous FedEx ATP Head2Head meeting, and will look to even the series for a spot in the quarter-finals.
Speaking of young Americans, Donaldson was not the only one to move on in Switzerland. This time last year, #NextGenATP American Frances Tiafoe had just two tour-level wins on the season, and four in his career. But the 20-year-old notched his 16th victory of 2018 on Monday, coming back to defeat compatriot Ryan Harrison 3-6, 7-6(5), 6-4.
Tiafoe trailed 2-5 in the second-set tie-break, but reeled off five consecutive points to force a decider. He will face No. 5 seed Albert Ramos-Vinolas or Hungarian Marton Fucsovics as he seeks his fourth quarter-final of the season.
Another American, Tennys Sandgren, raced into the second round after a slow start, beating Andreas Haider Maurer 1-6, 6-1, 6-0 to snap a five-match losing streak of his own. The Houston finalist (l. to Johnson) hit 11 aces and, after dropping the first set, won 91 per cent of his first-serve points (20/22).
Spanish qualifier Bernabe Zapata Miralles needed just 55 minutes to clinch a win in his first tour-level match, upsetting Germany’s Florian Mayer 6-3, 6-2. The 21-year-old will meet seventh seed Andreas Seppi in the second round.
Did You Know?
Bernabe Zapata Miralles was one of two players to clinch a win in his first tour-level match on Monday. Federico Coria also accomplished the feat in Lyon.