The bad weather does not let up to disrupt the on-court action in Houston, while almost all matches of ATP 250 event there were suspended on Friday for the third day in a row. The only one match was managed to get done, as Max Purcell defeated Daniel Altmaier 6-4 3-6 6-3. This match complemented the results of first round, with all the other play, starting from round of 16 is still pending.
“We have had several inches of rain in the past two days that have saturated our courts and these unseasonably cool temperatures are slowing down the drying process. We want to ensure that our courts are in the best possible condition to complete our tournament this weekend, and with that in mind we have decided to forgo play today with the exception of that first-round match that was deep into the third set.” - said tournament director Bronwyn Greer. (source - atptour.com)
While Houston tournament's hosts are struggling with bad luck, the other ATP 250 tournaments in Estoril and Marrakech are moving into decisive settlements with semifinalists being emerged after Friday's play in both places. Marco Cecchinato continues his impressive run. The Italian advanced into semis by making three upsets on higher rated players. After defeating Diego Schwartzman and Fabio Fognini, the Roland Garros 2017 semifinalist eliminated tournament's seed #3 this time, winning 7-5 7-6(5) against Alejandro Davidovich Fokina. The odds before each of those matches for the win of Cecchinato were respectively - 3.14, 2.55 and 4.23. The current's world number 96 will have a chance to make another surprise playing against Miomir Kecmanovic on Saturday. The Serbian, seeded with #6, eliminated Bernabe Zapata Miralles in straight sets 7-5 6-2.
Casper Ruud continues his Estoril's title quest succesfully. After coming back from being a set down against local favorite Joao Sousa in previous round, the top world's number 5 had no issues against Sebastian Baez. The Norwegian advanced into semis with an impressive 6-3 6-0 victory. There was a chance for semifinal's clash between players who both reached out the final of Roland Garros, but Quentin Halys denied Dominic Thiem with a confident 6-1 6-4 win to challenge Ruud on Saturday.
Estoril's quarterfinals highlights:
The semifinals in Marrakech will take part without presence of tournament's top seed, as Alexandre Muller made an upset on Lorenzo Musetti. The world's number 126 prevailed in three sets 6-3 1-6 6-4 against the Italian being ranked 105 places higher. Muller will play for a final spot against another surprise of Morroco's event. Pavel Kotov made it into semis after intense battle against Christopher Oconnell. The Russian won 6-3 6-7(6) 7-6(3) after 2:49 hours of play.
Daniel Evans did not disappoint as a best seed in bottom half of the draw. The Brit advanced to semis without losing a single set, eliminating Andrea Vavassori 6-3 7-5 in the QF. Roberto Carballes Baena will be his opponent on Saturday. The Spanish clay specialist eliminated Tallon Griekspoor after three sets ended up with a score 6-3 2-6 6-2.
Marrakech's quarterfinals highlights: