Tipsarevic looks to cut Raonic down to size
Originally published on: 03/10/12 00:00
Tipsarevic lost 6-7(4) 7-6(4) 7-6(4) in his only previous career clash with the big-serving Canadian in Chennai this January, and will bid to get back on level terms with Raonic and secure a spot in his eighth semi-final of the season when the pair square up on Friday.
Seeded third in Tokyo, Tipsarevic defeated Gilles Simon in three sets before easing past Swiss qualifier Marco Chiudinelli to set up the quarter-final clash, and he was in confident mood after avenging his semi-final Bangkok loss to Simon.
“The surface on this particular tournament favours me more because it is faster,” said Tipsarevic after his opening round victory. Indeed, two of his three career titles have come on hard courts – in Moscow and Kuala Lumpur last year – although the Belgrade native has found form on all surfaces in 2012.
The world No.9 reached back-to-back clay finals soon after this year’s Wimbledon, picking up his third career title in Stuttgart with victory over Juan Monaco, before falling to Thomaz Bellucci on the dirt in Gstaad. The 28-year-old Serb is seeking his first ATP final since that defeat in Switzerland – and his 11th career final in all – but may have to get past both Raonic and US Open champion Andy Murray if he is to do so.
The world No.9, who cracked the top 10 for the first time last November, has beaten Murray in three of their eight previous meetings and prevailed twice on a hard court – in Dubai in 2010 and Moscow in 2007.