Germany's Haas wins in Vienna for 500th victory

Germany's Haas wins in Vienna for 500th victory
October 18, 2012, 5:14 pm
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VIENNA (AP) Tommy Haas won for the 500th time in his career, reaching the milestone by defeating Jesse Levine of the U.S. 6-4, 6-2 Thursday at the Erste Bank Open.

Haas is the 38th player in the modern era to have won 500 matches. Only three others are still active - Roger Federer (871), Rafael Nadal (583) and Lleyton Hewitt (566).

``It's incredible I've reached that mark today,'' said Haas, a German who struggled with shoulder and hip injuries before returning to the top 20 this week. ``I had hardly played for 3 1/2 years before returning to the tour a year ago. I was even hungrier for success and getting to 500 wins became a major goal of mine.''

Janko Tipsarevic, seeded second, reached his 13th quarterfinal of the season by defeating Ernests Gulbis of Latvia 6-3, 6-4. Tipsarevic plays Aljaz Bedene of Slovenia in the quarterfinals. Bedene defeated Donald Young of the U.S. 7-6 (4), 6-7 (2), 6-3.

Marinko Matosevic of Australia beat wild card Dominic Thiem of Austria 6-3, 7-6 (5) to set up a quarterfinal against top-seeded Juan Martin del Potro.

Haas, seeded third, saved two break points early in the second set against Levine but did not concede a game afterward.

``It wasn't easy, he is a very dangerous player,'' he said. ``He attacked well but I got the right answers every time and served really well.''

Tipsarevic, who is ranked ninth and looking to qualify for the season-ending ATP World Tour Finals, dropped serve once in each set but dominated play from the baseline against Gulbis.

``I have to be pumped for every single point and not think what's going on behind me or ahead of me,'' the Serb said. ``The only thing I care about now is winning my next match. I don't think about winning the tournament or about reaching London.''

Tipsarevic said his changed attitude has helped him to become a top-10 player this year.

``I don't feel I improved my forehand, backhand or serve dramatically,'' he said. ``I just feel that now I am living and breathing tennis outside of the tennis court as much as I am on the tennis court. ... This changed after winning the Davis Cup. I realized I wasn't getting any younger and that I would regret it if I realized one day that I could have reached more in my career.''

The 55th-ranked Matosevic, who was on a six-match losing streak before the event, held serve throughout. Thiem, ranked 394th, had eight aces but missed out on his first career quarterfinal.

In other second-round play, Grega Zemlja of Slovenia beat Matthew Ebden of Australia 7-5, 6-4; and Paolo Lorenzi of Italy defeated Vasek Pospisil of Canada 6-4, 6-4.