Tipsarevic and Gasquet book their place in the last 16 at Flushing Meadows

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Favorites Janko Tipsarevic and Richard Gasquet dismiss unseeded players Grega Zemlja and Steve Johnson in straight sets to enter last 16 at 2012 US Open.

99th-ranked Slovenian Grega Zemlja was the first ever Slovene to have played in the third round of a Grand Slam tournament. He achieved this historical result at his first US Open appearance. The fact that he was a clear underdog in his match against eighth seed Tipsarevic did not prevent him to grab a break straight away and confirm it in a marathon second game. Zemlja had a a game ball for 5-3, but the Serb turned around both the game and the opener in just a few minutes after.

Both players held their serves until last year’s quarter-finalist Tipsarevic broke his opponent to love in the fifth game of the second set and managed to hold his serve to take a 2-0 lead in the match.

A dramatic third set followed: a seventh-game break enabled Tipsarevic to serve for the match at 5-4. However, Zemlja was unwilling to give up and saved three match points despite Tipsarevic unleashing some massive serves in that game. In the end, 25-years old Slovene broke back, but obviously lost a lot of energy while chasing his rival. Tipsarevic broke Zemlja to love in very next game and served out the match routinely. He thus bagged a 6-4, 6-3, 7-5 victory in a statistically rather equal encounter.

American Steve Johnson was also having an ATP tournament of his career until he ran into thirteenth-seeded French Gasquet in the third round of his second ever Grand Slam tournament. He got himself into a good position in the opening set as he battled out a 4-0 lead in the tie-break, but failed to score any points afterwards. Gasquet must have achieved a huge psychological advantage by winning seven consecutive points and going one set up.

The following two sets were less exciting. World No. 245 Johnson was broken twice in each of them, with Gasquet seizing the opportunity and advancing into last 16 with a 7-6 (4), 6-2, 6-3 scoreline. The American served more aces (10-8), but he conceded 8 double faults (Gasquet 4) and more than three times as many unforced errors as his rival (38-11).

Gasquet will meet Ferrer in next round, while Tipsarevic is waiting for the winner of Kohlschreiber-Isner match.

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