Tomas Berdych justified his billing as top seed at the Chennai Open 2013 with a straight forward victory over Somdev Devvarman 6-3 6-1. The local favourite had defeated Jan Hajek in round one but could not defeat a second Czech, getting outclassed. Berdych dropped just four points on first serve in a dominant performance and faced no break points. A single break in the fourth game was enough to take the first set for Berdych but he took complete control in the second. After Devvarman held for 1-0 to begin the set, Berdych won six straight games for the lost of just seven points.
It would be a bit more difficult for Marin Cilic, but he eventually came through in three sets to ensure the top four seeds all make the quarter finals. He served 15 aces in the 4-6 6-2 6-3 victory over Sergiy Stakhovsky. After saving a break point in the opening game of the match, Cilic would eventually falter in the seventh game of the first set, failing to recover from a 0-30 deficit and eventually getting broken. Stakhovsky would serve out the set to take the lead but immediately the momentum switched early in set two after Cilic came out on top in a lengthy service game and consolidated for a 3-0 lead. The Croatian tightened up on serve in the second and would not drop one point on his first serve. Serving to stay in the set at 2-5, Stahovsky would give up his serve once more allowing Cilic to serve in the first game of the deciding set.
Stakhovsky had a chance to break in the opening game of the third set but would fail to do so, instantly paying for his failure to convert with Cilic breaking in the very next game. That would be it for the match with no more break chances on offer – with Cilic eventually finishing the match off with a love hold to move onto the next round.
Berdych’s performance wasn’t the most one sided victory today – that honour was saved for Benoit Paire who dropped just one game in a 41 minute destruction of Israel’s Dudi Sela. Roberto Bautista-Agut rounds off the quarter finalists, making it through after a hard fought 7-6(4) 6-3 victory over Mathias Bachinger.
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