Monaco, Verdasco, Haase reach Kitzbuhel quarters
Kitzbuhel, Austria – Second seed and former champion Juan Monaco, former runner-up Fernando Verdasco and two-time reigning titlist Robin Haase were among Wednesday's second-round winners at the $540,000 bet-at-home Cup Kitzbuhel tennis event.
The Argentine star Monaco handled Austrian wild card Andreas Haider-Maurer 6-3, 6-4, while the third-seeded Verdasco topped 2009 champion and fellow Spaniard Guillermo Garcia-Lopez 6-2, 7-6 (9-7), and the big-serving Dutchman Haase improved to 11-0 at this tournament by humbling German Daniel Brands 6-4, 6-1 on the red clay at Kitzbuhel Tennis Stadium. Brands stunned Roger Federer in the second round in Gstaad last week.
Haase, who's fresh off his runner-up finish in Gstaad, beat German Philipp Kohlschreiber in last year's finale for his second straight Kitzbuhel championship, while Monaco titled here in 2007 and Verdasco was a finalist back in 2005.
In other action involving seeded players, wild card Dominic Thiem ousted compatriot and fourth-seeded long-time Austrian favorite Jurgen Melzer 7-5, 6-3 and seventh-seeded Spaniard Albert Montanes snuck past Romanian veteran Victor Hanescu 7-6 (7-2), 3-6, 7-6 (7-5). Montanes was the Kitzbuhel runner-up to Haase two years ago. Melzer was a finalist here in 2008.
Also on Day 3, Spaniard Daniel Gimeno-Traver doused Czech qualifier Jan Hajek 6-3, 6-3.
Thursday's quarterfinals will pit Monaco against Gimeno-Traver, Verdasco versus Haase, Montanes against Thiem, and eighth-seeded Spaniard Marcel Granollers versus Argentine Leonardo Mayer.
The winner of this $540,000 tournament will earn $98,000.