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Tennis: Berdych, Raonic win, Isner falls at Washington

Czech top seed Tomas Berdych and Wimbledon semi-finalist Milos Raonic advanced while US fifth seed John Isner lost on Wednesday (July 30) in second-round matches at the ATP and WTA Washington Open.

WASHINGTON: Czech top seed Tomas Berdych and Wimbledon semi-finalist Milos Raonic advanced while US fifth seed John Isner lost on Wednesday (July 30) in second-round matches at the ATP and WTA Washington Open.

Berdych, seeking his 10th career ATP title and first on US soil, defeated US qualifier Robby Ginepri 6-1, 6-4 at the $1.9 million hardcourt tune-up for the US Open. Canadian second seed Raonic fired 16 aces in ousting American Jack Sock 7-6 (7/3), 7-6 (7/3) while American Steve Johnson never faced a break point and withstood a 29-ace barrage to defeat countryman Isner 6-7 (5/7), 6-3, 7-6 (8/6).

Berdych connected on only 48 per cent of his first serves but still needed only 68 minutes to dispatch Ginepri, whose only two ATP wins this year came in the past 10 days. Berdych will face Canada's Vasek Pospisil in the third round.

"I felt good on the court," Berdych said. "My goal was to be focused. It can be tougher after you have a few weeks off."

Raonic, coming off a loss to Roger Federer in his first Grand Slam semi-final, advanced to a third-round match with 33-year-old Australian Lleyton Hewitt.

Sock seized a 3-1 edge in the first tie-breaker but Raonic answered by winning the next six points to claim the opening set, the last coming when Sock netted a forehand. Sock served for the second set in the 10th game. Raonic broke back and reached another tie-breaker that went to 3-3. The Canadian then swept the next four points, the last on a forehand winner for the victory in one hour 42 minutes.

"I just played two fairly solid tie-breakers," Raonic said. "I made the most of my opportunities on the important points. I was able to tough that one through."

Isner, twice a Washington runner-up, was coming off a title last week in Atlanta. He double-faulted for the third and final time on the penultimate point to help Johnson win their first meeting.

Japan's fourth-seeded Kei Nishikori outlasted American Sam Querrey 6-4, 5-7, 6-4 to join Berdych and Raonic in the last 16.

"I stayed solid from the baseline and concentrated on my service games," Nishikori said. "It was a good finish. There were some tight moments but I'm very happy with the way I'm playing."

Nishikori next faces Slovakian Lukas Lacko with sixth seed Richard Gasquet a potential quarter-final foe after the Frenchman beat Israel's Dudi Sela 6-3, 6-2. Dominican Victor Estrella Burgos upset Spanish eighth seed Feliciano Lopez 7-6 (7/5), 6-4. He meets Colombian Santiago Giraldo next.

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