Ivo Karlovic reaches second round, Lukas Rosol and Malek Jaziri dismissed seeded players to play in Moscow 2012 quarterfinals.
Karlovic delivered a four games run to move 4-1 up in the opening set against Italian Simone Bolelli. The Croat failed to confirm his second break, but his serve was not in danger later on. He finished the opener off with a smooth hold. The Moscow crowd saw a break and a re-break by 2-2 in the next set. The players now consolidated their service games and let the tie-break lottery decide the outcome. One late mini-break did the trick for Karlovic who sent the Italian packing with his first match-ball rally. The Croat took this one with a 6-4, 7-6 (4) final score and is playing Bogomolov in round two.
Czech Rosol, however, has already made his way into the best eight by smashing out sixth seed Uzbek Denis Istomin. The latter stole the opener thanks to the seventh game break, yet Rosol’s persistence has paid off in later stages. He saved two break points by 3-3 and broke the Uzbek in his last service game in the set two. Even in the decider we witnessed a head-to-head clash with only one dropped service game separating the athletes in the end. The Czech’s break for 5-3 enabled him to serve the match out few minutes later. Rosol celebrated his 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 victory and is to play another surprise winner Jaziri in the quarters.
Third seed Viktor Troicki entered the tournament as Moscow 2010 title holder and last year’s runner up. His Kremlin Cup 2012 performance, however, will not be a success story as he stumbled against unseeded Tunisian Jaziri in three sets. The underdog Jaziri caught the Serb favorite napping in the first set and opened the match with an astonishing five straight games run. Troicki was a whisker away from a bagel, but the set was already over as a contest by then. The Serb started to put more pressure on his opponent in the following set and acquired a 5-2 set lead as a result. He leveled the score with a love game. Jaziri was nearly broken at the beginning of the decider, but what does not kill you makes you stronger. The Tunisian bossed Troicki around for the rest of the proceedings and generated a triple match ball on his rival’s serve. He converted the second one to take Troicki’s scalp with a 6-1, 3-6, 6-2 success.
Unlike his seeded colleagues, eighth-seeded Japanese Ito won the deciding set against 253rd-ranked domestic player Kravchuk: 7-6 (7), 2-6, 6-3.