October 13, 2005

Blake, Rochus, Paradorn reach quarterfinals

STOCKHOLM, Sweden (AP) - James Blake rallied from a set down to beat Christophe Rochus 6-7 (9), 7-5, 6-2 Thursday to reach the Stockholm Open quarterfinals.

Rochus' older brother, Olivier, defeated Julien Benneteau of France 6-4, 6-2, and 2002 Stockholm champion Paradorn Srichaphan advanced with a 6-2, 6-3 win over Alexander Waske of Germany.

Blake, a quarterfinalist in the U.S. Open, lost the first-set tiebreak 11-9 and was broken early in the second set. But he wasn't worried. "Being down a break and a set doesn't mean that much," Blake said. "I knew that I had the confidence to win the match and luckily it came through for me today. I knew I had to pressure early in the third set. He doesn't have much of an offensive game." It was the second time this fall the 24-year-old Blake played one of the Rochus brothers. "I played his brother a few weeks ago," Blake said. "Both fight very hard. They play great defense. So it tough to put balls away even on indoor hard."

Paradorn and Rochus have not lost a set in their first two matches at the Royal Tennis Hall.

In Friday's quarterfinals, Blake plays the winner of the match between Belgium's Xavier Malisse and Alberto Martin of Spain.

Paradorn will play two-time defending champion Thomas Johansson of Sweden, while Rochus will face either Sweden's Jonas Bjorkman or Mario Ancic of Croatia.
By STEPHAN NASSTROM, AP Sports

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Posted by Bob Wallace at October 13, 2005 2:07 PM
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