Saturday, October 11, 2014

Aussie upsets No. 2 seed in Tiburon Challenger

John Millman, shown last week in Sacramento, beat second-
seeded Tim Smyczek on Friday in the quarterfinals of the
$100,000 Tiburon Challenger. Photo by Paul Bauman
   John Millman took another step in his comeback from shoulder surgery.
   The unseeded Australian defeated second-seeded Tim Smyczek of Tampa, Fla., 6-1, 5-7, 6-3 on Friday in a quarterfinal matchup of consummate professionals in the $100,000 First Republic Bank Tiburon Challenger at the Tiburon Peninsula Club.
   Smyczek (pronounced SMEE-check) was coming off a 2-6, 7-6 (3), 7-5 victory over American Jared Donaldson, a 17-year-old wild card, in 2 hours, 27 minutes on Thursday. Millman, meanwhile, had breezed past lucky loser Liam Broady of Great Britain 6-1, 6-2.
   The 25-year-old Millman, who returned to action in April after missing 11 months, reached the semifinals for the second consecutive week. He lost to eventual champion Sam Querrey in three sets in the $100,000 Sacramento Challenger but soared 120 spots in the world rankings to No. 406. His career high is No. 126 in April 2013.
   Millman, who will play No. 314 Nils Langer of Germany today, could get another crack at Querrey in the Tiburon final. Langer outlasted fellow qualifier Marcos Giron, who turned pro in June after winning the NCAA singles title as a UCLA junior, 6-4, 1-6, 7-5.
   Langer avenged a 6-3, 6-7 (9), 7-6 (4) loss to Giron in the last round of qualifying in Sacramento.
   Millman is 1-0 against Langer, coasting 6-1, 6-3 in the second round of qualifying on clay in Munich last year on the ATP World Tour. Millman, a right-hander, tore cartilage in his right shoulder later in the tournament.
   In today's other semifinal, the top-seeded Querrey will face qualifier Matt Reid of Australia for the first time.
   Querrey, a native of nearby San Francisco who lives in Las Vegas, topped unseeded James McGee of Ireland 6-1, 7-5 for his 15th straight victory. Reid outplayed wild card Bjorn Fratangelo of Plum, Pa., 6-4, 7-5.  
   Querrey is ranked 48th, down from his career high of 17th in 2011, and Reid 276th.
At Tiburon Peninsula Club
Singles quarterfinals
   Nils Langer, Germany, def. Marcos Giron, United States, 6-4, 1-6, 7-5.
   Matt Reid, Australia, def. Bjorn Fratangelo, United States, 6-4, 7-5.
   John Millman, Australia, def. Tim Smyczek (2), United States, 6-1, 5-7, 6-3.
   Sam Querrey (1), United States, def. James McGee, Ireland, 6-1, 7-5.
Doubles semifinals
   Carsten Ball and Matt Reid, Australia, def. Marcus Daniell and Artem Sitak (1), New Zealand, 6-3, 3-6 [10-6].
Today's schedule
(Starting at 11 a.m.)
Stadium Court
   Bradley Klahn, United States, and Adil Shamasdin (2), Canada, vs. Chase Buchanan and Tennys Sandgren, United States.
   John Millman, Australia, vs. Nils Langer, Germany (not before 1 p.m.).
   Sam Querrey (1), United States, vs. Matt Reid, Australia.

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