Querrey Fights Off A Determined Smyczek

Delray Beach Open, USA

[CR61] Sam Querrey (USA) vs. [CR129] Tim Smyczek (USA)

Querrey knew well the determination of Smyczek, so he expected this to be a battle. Their head-to-head was tied at 1:1.  Smyczek defended his serve very well in the first set and it went to a tiebreak, which he won surprisingly easily.  Although Querrey has the bigger serve, it was of no use in the tiebreak.  The second set was a complete reversal, Smyczek struggled to hold serve from a dominant position of 40-0 and was broken. Yet, a lead does not guarantee Querrey a victory, as he has been struggling to close out sets/matches from a winning position.  Smyczek knew that if he stayed close he would have opportunities to get back in the set.  Querrey gave him several break chances, but Smyczek failed to take advantage until Querrey served for the second set and stumbled. There was a second tiebreak.  Who would control the nerves better?

Smyczek despite his determination does not have the weapons of Querrey.  He wins with his quickness and accuracy of shot placement, both of which are hampered when your confidence dips.  Querrey wobbled a little from 5-1 up but managed to pull it together to win the second set. Despite a plethora of break chances to start the third set, Smyczek appeared to have lost his focus and could not get the ball in play, when he did he could not sustain the rally to his advantage. Both players were nervous, they traded breaks, and neither was confident they could elevate their game when it became necessary. The winner would be the one who found his composure at the critical moment.  In the end that was Querrey after Smyczek lost his serve once again from a winning position; he won 6-7(1), 7-6(4), 6-4 and advanced to the semifinals.

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