At the end of last week, Juan Mónaco and Richard Gasquet were still tied in the Race, having both won the tournament in which they were entered. Both had a chance to inch a little higher with the first-round defeat of Nicolás Almagro. It seemed a pretty easy task for Gasquet, who was facing World n° 165 Zhang Ze in the second round, and a very tough one for Mónaco, opposite Marcos Baghdatis.
Finally, the end result was the same: both lost, although one upset is much more shocking than the other.
In Tokyo, Mónaco tried and fought, but Baghdatis is known for being a tricky and difficult player when he’s on. The Cypriot played a great match and escaped with the upset, 7-5 1-6 6-3, and Pico was the first to acknowledge it:
The Asian tour doesn’t end here, I’ll keep working hard 2 do my best in Shanghai. Marcos played better than me today, congratulations to him
— Juan Monaco (@picomonaco) October 4, 2012
In Beijing, the logical prediction would have been an easy win for Richard Gasquet. However, tennis is rarely the most predictable sport, especially when Richard Gasquet is one of the protagonists. The Frenchman surprisingly lost the first set, 4-6, but went to take the second set and was up a break in the third when Zhang Ze broke back, and broke once more as Gasquet was serving to stay in the match, thus reaching his first ATP quarter-finals, 6-4 3-6 6-4. A wonderful result for the 22-year-old Chinese.
Both Mónaco and Gasquet had a chance to distance himself from the other, and from Nicolás Almagro, in the Race, In the end, with about a half hour difference, both bit the dust and will start over next week, in the Shanghai Masters 1000, where Mónaco will have a slight advantage: he will only start in the second round, being bumped to seventh seed due to the pull-outs of Rafael Nadal (knee), David Ferrer (stomach virus), and Juan Martín del Potro (left wrist).
Other results (Tokyo)
-  Tomas Berdych d. Alejandro Falla, 6-3 7-5. This was Berdych’s 50th win of the season
-  Janko Tipsarevic d. Marco Chiudinelli, 6-4 6-2
-  Milos Raonic d. Viktor Troicki, 3-0 ret.
-  Kei Nishikori d. Tommy Robredo, 5-7 6-1 6-0
- Dmitry Tursunov d. Tatsuma Ito, 7-5 6-3
Other results (Beijing)
- Mikhail Youzhny d. Kevin Anderson, 6-3 6-3
- Sam Querrey d. Andreas Seppi, 6-1 6-4
- Feliciano López d. Yen-Hsun Lu, 6-3 7-6(7)
It’s impossible not to mention the first-round doubles upset of Carlos Berlocq and Denis Istomin, who edged the n° 2 team in the world, Max Mirnyi and Daniel Nestor, 1-6 6-3 12-10. Berlocq and Istomin will face Mahesh Bhupathi and Rohan Bopanna in the quarter-finals.
The quarter-finals are set
The second round is now completed in both tournaments and the quarter-final match-ups are now set.
-  Andy Murray vs  Stanislas Wawrinka
-  Janko Tipsarevic vs  Milos Raonic
-  Tomas Berdych vs  Kei Nishikori
- Dmitry Tursunov vs Marcos Baghdatis
Matches will start at 22:00 ET with Tipsarevic vs Raonic. For those of you in Canada, this match will be shown live on Sportsnet One.
-  Novak Djokovic vs Jürgen Melzer
- Florian Mayer vs Zhang Ze
- Feliciano López vs Sam Querrey
-  Jo-Wilfried Tsonga vs Mikhail Youzhny
Matches will start at 0:30 ET.