Nitto ATP Finals Contenders Hubert Hurkacz & Cameron Norrie Win In Paris | ATP Tour


Two Nitto ATP Finals contenders, Hubert Hurkacz and Cameron Norrie, both worked hard on Wednesday for their places in the Rolex Paris Masters third round.

Hurkacz brushed off a first-set scare to stay in the hunt for one of the two remaining places at the season finale, when the seventh-seeded Pole struck 13 aces in a 7-5, 7-6(4) victory over Tommy Paul, an American qualifier, in one hour and 47 minutes.

Both Hurkacz and Norrie are pushing Casper Ruud and Jannik Sinner, who sit in the last two automatic qualification spots for the Nitto ATP Finals, to be held at the Pala Alpitour in Turin from 14-21 November. Hurkacz began the week in 10th position in the FedEx ATP Race To Turin, while Norrie was in 11th.

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Hurkacz was in total control leading 5-0 in the opener, but Paul came within a point of claiming a 6-5 advantage on three occasions. After such hard graft, Paul dropped his level in the next game and Hurkacz took advantage of a backhand error to clinch the 51-minute set.

In the second set, Paul opened up a 5-3 lead – courtesy of a backhand into the net from Hurkacz in the seventh game – but when serving for the set, the American struck a double fault and handed Hurkacz a way back in. Hurkacz dominated the early stages of the tie-break and clinched victory when Paul hit a forehand drop shot into the net.

A little later in the day, Norrie recorded his 50th match win of the season by recovering from 1-3 down in the second set to beat Reilly Opelka 6-3, 6-4 in 74 minutes. The recent BNP Paribas Open titlist sets up a clash against another American, Taylor Fritz, who knocked out sixth-seeded Russian Andrey Rublev.

Norrie gained a 5-3 lead in the 28-minute first set after Opelka struck a double fault, but was on the backfoot at 1-2 in the second set when the American hit a series of powerful groundstrokes. Opelka then lost five games in a row, saved four match points on serve at 3-5, but was unable to stop Norrie when the Briton served for the match.

Elsewhere, third seed Stefanos Tsitsipas, who has already stamped his ticket for Turin, retired after 28 minutes of play shortly after being broken by Australian lucky loser Alexei Popyrin in the first set. The Greek star, who was trailing 2-4, appeared to be suffering from a right arm injury. Popyrin now plays compatriot James Duckworth.



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