By The Canadian Press on February 1, 2024.
MONTPELLIER, France – Canada’s Felix Auger-Aliassime advanced to the quarterfinals of the Open Sud de France tennis tournament with a razor-thin 7-5, 2-6, 7-6 (4) win over local favourite Arthur Cazaux on Thursday.
Montreal’s Auger-Aliassime, seeded third in Montpellier, was uncharacteristically second-best in the service game.
Cazaux had 12 aces to six for Auger-Aliassime, and the Canadian committed seven double-faults compared to two for the young Frenchman.
The 21-year-old Cazaux, who was born in Montpellier, was also the more opportunistic player, breaking Auger-Aliassime five times on six chances. Auger-Aliassime scored four breaks on 10 opportunities.
But Auger-Aliassime scored a huge break in the third set to come back from a 5-3 deficit and win the match.
The 23-year-old Auger-Aliassime, ranked 30th in the world, will face French wild-card Harold Mayot, ranked 144th on the ATP Tour, in the quarterfinals of the ATP 250 indoor tournament.
He advanced to the third round of a tournament for the first time this season after losing in the round-of-16 in Auckland and the second round of the Australian Open.
The 21-year-old Cazaux is set to enter the top-80 of the ATP rankings after he won his opening match over Maximilian Marterer in Montpellier.
He is coming off a successful debut at the Australian Open, where he advanced to the fourth round and upset No. 8 Holger Rune in the second round.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 1, 2024.