Simon marches on
Originally published on: 26/02/10 12:01
The second-seeded Frenchman and defending champion was a 6-3 6-4 victor over the Spaniard at the claycourt tournament in Bucharest.
Simon, who beat local favourite Victor Hanescu in the final last year, is searching for his third title of 2008 having won at Casablanca and Indianapolis.
The 23-year-old, who made headlines at the Rogers Cup this summer with a second-round upset of Roger Federer in the second round, will face countryman Florent Serra in the last eight.
Overall, it was not a good day for the top seeds in Bucharest as third seed Nicolas Almagro of Spain and fourth seed Paul Henri-Mathieu of France were upset by unseeded opponents.
Almagro, who has one of the best claycourt records on the ATP circuit this year, was beaten 6-4 7-5, by compatriot Guillermo Garcia-Lopez in the second round while Mathieu suffered a 6-4 6-7 (5/7) 6-3 defeat by 71st-ranked Spaniard Ivan Navarro in the only first-round match remaining.
Garcia-Lopez is trying to reach the first ATP singles final of his career but faces a challenge in the quarter-finals, where he will face sixth-seeded countryman Carlos Moya, who was a 6-3 7-6 (8/6) winner over qualifier Pablo Andujar.
The 32-year-old Moya, a former world number one, has won three of four meetings with Garcia-Lopez.
Top-seeded Frenchman Richard Gasquet will be hoping to seal a place in the quarter-finals on Thursday when he faces Romanian wild card Victor Crivoi.