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Rediff.com  » Sports » Tsonga breezes into last eight

Tsonga breezes into last eight

February 06, 2009 09:50 IST

Top seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga continued his quest to win the first ATP tournament to be played in Southern Africa since 1995 by dispatching Denis Istomin 6-1, 6-4 in the South African Open on Thursday.

Frenchman Tsonga brushed aside the 104th-ranked Istomin from Uzbekistan with ease at Montecasino in Johannesburg to reach the last eight.

The world number 14 broke in the second and sixth games of the first set but Istomin showed commendable spirit in the second, making fewer unforced errors as his nerves settled.

"I'm in my second successive quarter-finals, which is good, but it is not enough for me. I need to win two of these sort of tournaments to get back into the top 10," Tsonga told a news conference.

The 23-year-old lost in the quarter-finals of the Australian Open last week, having reached the final of the 2008 tournament which lifted him into the world's top 10.

Tsonga will meet seventh seed Kristof Vliegen in the quarter-finals, after the Belgian beat Ivo Minar of the Czech Republic 6-4 6-1.

"It was not easy to play out there tonight because of the altitude, but it was a decent hit for an hour. It was good for the next round, which will be tough because Kristof is a very good player," Tsonga said.

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