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Berdych pounds Paire at Open Sud de France; Goffin out

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MONTPELLIER, France — Former champion Tomas Berdych swept aside Benoit Paire 6-2, 6-0 in less than one hour on Wednesday to reach the Open Sud de France quarterfinals.

The unseeded Czech broke Paire’s serve five times, and saved both break points he faced against the eighth-seeded Frenchman. Berdych, who won the indoor hardcourt title in 2012, next faces Filip Krajinovic of Serbia in their first meeting on the ATP Tour.

The resilient Krajinovic beat second-seeded David Goffin of Belgium 6-4, 6-4 after withstanding 11 aces, saving all four break points, and breaking Goffin’s serve twice.

No. 6 Jeremy Chardy and unseeded wild-card entry Jo-Wilfried Tsonga also won their second-round matches, setting up an all-French quarterfinal.

Chardy had nine aces in a 6-3, 7-5 win against inexperienced countryman Antoine Hoang, who came through the qualifying rounds.

Tsonga had 11 as he won 6-2, 7-6 (3) against fourth-seeded Gilles Simon, beating him for the ninth time in their 12 meetings.

The 33-year-old Tsonga’s ranking has plummeted to 210 following surgery on his left knee in April.

He lost to eventual champion Novak Djokovic in the second round of the Australian Open last month.

Opelka edges top-seeded Isner to reach New York Open final

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UNIONDALE, N.Y. (AP) Reilly Opelka edged top-seeded John Isner the same way he knocked his fellow American out of the Australian Open, winning a match full of tiebreakers Saturday night in a New York Open semifinal that set a record for combined aces in a three-set match.

Opelka fought off six match points in a marathon second set and went on to win 6-7 (8), 7-6 (14), 7-6 (4) to move within a victory of his first ATP title.

The 6-foot-11 Opelka and 6-10 Isner combined for 81 aces and there were no breaks of serve. Opelka hit 43 aces, Isner had 38, and each had only one double fault.

It was similar to their meeting in Melbourne, when Opelka beat the ninth-ranked Isner in a first-round match that went four tiebreakers.

Opelka will play Canadian Brayden Schnur, a qualifier who had never won a tour-level match before this week.

Schnur recovered after blowing a 3-0 lead and eventually the second set to beat American Sam Querrey 7-6 (7), 4-6, 6-3.

Schnur was the final alternate accepted into the tournament’s qualifying draw and was nearly gone from Long Island quickly, eventually overcoming two match points to beat No. 3 seed Steve Johnson in the second round.

There was nothing quick about the second semifinal, which lasted 2 hours, 31 minutes and went well past the previous record of 71 aces, set earlier this year in a match between Nick Kyrgios and Ryan Harrison.

Isner was in good position to win in straight sets, taking a 3-1 lead in the tiebreaker when Opelka pushed a forehand long. But he wasted a chance to win the match on his serve, and Opelka then kept erasing the rest of the match points when he served.

Isner had dropped both matches this season, part of a six-match skid dating to the end of last year, before winning his first two matches here in straight sets.

But he was stopped again by Opelka, who fell two aces shy of Ivo Karlovic’s record for most aces in a three-set match.

More AP Tennis: https://www.apnews.com/apf-Tennis and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

Mertens upsets Halep in Qatar Open final

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DOHA, Qatar – Unseeded Elise Mertens came from a set and a break down to beat recent No. 1 Simona Halep 3-6, 6-4, 6-3 in the Qatar Open final and capture the biggest title of her career on Saturday.

Halep led 6-3, 2-0, then lost a service game for a third time to see the second set back on serve. Mertens continued to pressure, missing two more break chances in the seventh game but finally breaking – to love – in the ninth. The set was the first Mertens took from Halep in three matchups.

Mertens broke again to start the third set, Halep leveled at 2-2, but Mertens finished stronger and won her fifth career title.

The Belgian beat two other top-10 players this week, Kiki Bertens and Angelique Kerber.

Halep’s first final appearance since August guaranteed she will rise one spot to No. 2 in the rankings on Monday.