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Auger-Aliassime falls in straight sets, Dabrowski wins doubles match at Citi Open

Montreal’s Felix Auger-Aliassime fell in consecutive sets to Japan’s Yosuke Watanuki at the Citi DC Open in Washington on Wednesday, suffering a 7-6(10), 7-6(3) loss.

Auger-Aliassime has struggled through injuries this season and spoke recently about his determination to recover from them.

He was the third seed in the tournament and heads to Canada to take part in the National Bank Open, a tournament he has never won.

Gabriela Dabrowksi, of Ottawa, Ont., and her doubles partner Shuko Aoyama won their doubles matchup versus Erin Routliffe and Ingrid Neel.

The pair won consecutive sets versus their adversary (6-3, 6-2) in the round of 16.

Leylah Fernandez of Laval, Que., is set to play Greece’s Maria Sakkari on Thursday in the Round of 16 on the women’s singles side of the tournament.

Andy Murray is moving on at the DC Open after defeating American Brandon Nakashima in straight sets Wednesday.

Cheered loudly and vociferously by the crowd at stadium court, the three-time Grand Slam champion and former top-ranked men’s player rallied to win the first-set tiebreak and broke Nakashima early in the second on the way to a 7-6(5), 6-4 victory. It’s his first victory in Washington since 2018, a low point of Murray’s career when fatigue caused him to withdraw and he didn’t want to play tennis anymore.

The British star has no such issues now and showed clearly that at 36 he’s still got it, slicing shots perfectly over the net and returning some strong volleys that Nakashima couldn’t handle.

Murray did struggle early to handle Nakashima’s serve, leading to a tiebreak that he trailed 4-2. Fans yelled, “I love you Andy!” and chanted, “Let’s go, Andy, let’s go!” and Murray came back to win it and take control of the match.

Next up for Murray in the hard-court tune-up for the U.S. Open is top-seeded Taylor Fritz, who defeated fellow American Zachary Svajda later Wednesday.

In other men’s results, eleventh-seeded Christopher Eubanks beat Sho Shimabukuro 6-3, 6-4.

On the women’s side of the draw, seventh-ranked Coco Gauff defeated Washington native Hailey Baptiste. In what she calls a rebuilding period after adding coach Brad Gilbert to her team, Gauff grinded through some tough stretches to win 6-1, 6-4.

Ukraine’s Elina Svitolina improved to 8-0 versus Russia’s Daria Kasatkina, beating her 6-2, 6-2 in their first matchup since the French Open. Just as she has against players from Russia and ally Belarus since the invasion in February 2022, Svitolina did not shake hands after the match, despite Kasatkina speaking out against the war.

Svitolina will face either fourth-ranked Jessica Pegula or alternate Peyton Stearns in the quarterfinals. Pegula, the tournament’s top seed, is tentatively scheduled to play Stearns on stadium court Thursday night.

Also Wednesday, 15th-ranked Belinda Bencic moved into the quarters by defeating American Lauren Davis 6-1, 6-4, and Madison Keys advanced into the Round of 16 with a 7-5, 6-1 victory against China’s Qinwen Zheng.

Steve Carr

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