ATP St. Petersburg: Spaniards struggle on day two

The two biggest names in action on Tuesday at the St. Petersburg Open were both sent packing as first round action continued on the indoor courts of western Russia.

ATP St. Petersburg: Spaniards struggle on day two
Daniil Medvedev and Alexander Bublik embrace after their first round match. Photo: St. Petersburg Open

The first big upset of the St. Petersburg Open happened on Wednesday as the lone seeded player in action was ousted. The other biggest name also went crashing out in a wild day in St. Petersburg. As the first round continued, here’s what happened on day two in St. Petersburg.

Results

Sixth seed Albert Ramos-Vinolas was the highest-ranked player in action on Tuesday as he took on the 255th ranked player in the world, French qualifier Alexandre Sidorenko. Despite being over 200 spots behind his opponent in the rankings, the French veteran brought his A-game, stunning the sixth seed in straight sets. Sidorenko got off to a slow start, being broken in his first service game. He soon turned the tables, going up a breaking and serving for the set at 5-4. While he was broken back, he broke again in the following game and this time served out the opening set. After Ramos-Vinolas held in the first game of the second set, the Frenchman retook control, winning five straight games before eventually pulling off the upset 7-5, 6-2. The key stat in the match was Ramos-Vinolas struggles on second serve, only winning 37 percent of those points.

Alexandre Sidorenko hits a backhand during his upset win. Photo: St. Petersburg Open
Alexandre Sidorenko hits a backhand during his upset win. Photo: St. Petersburg Open

The bad day for Spain continued as former world number seven Fernando Verdasco fell victim to a comeback from Serbian Dusan Lajovic. Verdasco was in charge early, breaking twice to taking the opening set. But Lajovic upped his level in the second set and scored the lone break to level. Verdasco seemed to reclaim control early in the third set, as he broke the Lajovic for a 2-0 lead. But the Serbian turned the tables one more time, reeling off six straight games to close out the comeback victory by a 2-6, 6-3, 6-2 scoreline.

Paolo Lorenzi was a point away from defeat twice in the second set before mounting a furious comeback to defeat qualifier Mischa Zverev 3-6, 7-6(6), 6-0. Zverev started quickly, breaking early for a 3-0 lead and hanging on to take the opening set. The German did well to keep the second set alive, saving multiple set points before forcing a tiebreak. In the breaker, Zverev took a 6-4 lead, but could not convert either match points as Lorenzi battled back to win the tiebreak. The deciding set was dominated by the Italian, as he broke three times to race into round two.  

A battle of late Russian entries saw qualifier Daniil Medvedev defeat wildcard Alexander Bublik in straight sets. The opening set was close, with the first four games going against serve before Medvedev broke again to seal the opening set 6-4. The 20-year-old took full control in the second set, blowing Bublik off the court to take the set 6-0 and set a date with a fellow young gun, Alexander Zverev, in the second round.

The final first round matches will be played tomorrow, while the second round will also get underway, including the opening matches for top seed Stan Wawrinka and fourth seed Roberto Bautista Agut.