ATP Winston-Salem: Sam Querrey beats Jarkko Nieminen in three to reach quarter-finals
Last Updated: August 22, 2013 5:18am
Sam Querrey: Came through a three-set epic against Jarkko Nieminen
American Sam Querrey booked his place in the quarter-finals of the Winston-Salem Open after coming through a titanic struggle with Jarkko Nieminen.
Querrey ensured the crowds in North Carolina had plenty to cheer as he fought back from a set down to clinch an epic 4-6 7-6 (9/7) 7-6 (14/12) victory over his Finnish rival.
The big-serving American was forced to survive five match points in the deciding tie-breaker but did so to emerge triumphant and will now face Ricardas Berankis in the last eight.
"This is huge for my confidence," said Querrey.
"It's the first time in a long while I can remember squeezing out a long tough one, saving match points, getting through when it wasn't pretty at times.
"I felt better in this match than the first one and tomorrow I am hoping I'll feel a bit better."
The unseeded Berankis had a far simpler passage into the quarters as he recorded a straightforward 6-3 6-3 win over Spain's Roberto Bautista Agut.
Querrey's fellow American, qualifier Steve Johnson, bowed out of the tournament after going down 6-3 6-2 to Lu Yen-Hsun of Taiwan. Yen-Hsun's reward is a clash with 10th seed Alexandra Dolgopolov, who beat No 8 seed Juan Monaco 4-6 6-3 6-3
There were wins for seventh and 13th seeds Fernando Verdasco and Dmitry Tursunov, although in differing fashions.
Verdasco was given a tough work-out by Robin Haase before he claimed a 6-4 6-7 (10-8) 6-3 success, while Tursunov overcame fellow Russian Alex Bogomolov Jr 6-3 7-5.
Ninth seed Jurgen Melzer was in fine form as he proved too good for Benoit Paire, beating the fifth-seeded Frenchman 6-4 6-3.
Gael Monfils caused a minor upset as he beat fourth seed Tommy Robredo 7-6 (7-2) 4-6 6-2 - and the Frenchman will now face Verdasco.