25th February, 2012
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga sealed the 200th match win of his career in beating Edouard Roger-Vasselin 6-4 7-5 late Friday, to set up an interesting ATP Marseille semi-final with former US Open champion, Juan Martin del Potro.
Tsonga, who won the tournament in 2009, had the measure of his compatriot over two tight sets of tennis, but eventually won in 93 minutes.It is Tsonga’s 11th victory of the season, with only one loss – at the Australian Open fourth round against Japanese Kei Nishikori.However, a mouthwatering last-four match-up awaits, with French player, Tsonga facing Del Potro of Argentina, who overcame Richard Gasquet 7-5 7-6.
Coincidentally, the win was also Del Potro’s 200th on the ATP Tour, and it came in a match in which little separated the two players.”It was a nice match to play. His backhand passing shots were fantastic,” said the world number 10.”
But I served really well in the tie-break. When I was down 4-3, I hit two aces. On my first match point, I played aggressively to take the match. It was really close.In the other half of the draw, third seed Janko Tipsarevic got the better of Ivan Ljubicic, winning 6-4 6-4 in an hour and a half.Awaiting the Serb in the semi-finals is Michael Llodra, who defeated Albano Olivetti 7-6(5) 7-5 in an all-French quarter-final.Olivetti, ranked 388th in the world and making his first appearance in the main draw of an ATP tournament, had caused a sensation by defeating Mardy Fish in the last round.The 20-year-old came unstuck against Llodra, a finalist in Marseille in 2009 and winner there in 2010.