Tipsarevic stunned by world No.808
Originally published on: 17/10/13 00:00
The Serb, who won the title in Moscow in 2011, was a Top 10 player at the end of last season, but has slipped to No.27 following a string of disappointing results after struggling with injury and illness.
Since his first-round defeat to compatriot Viktor Troicki at Wimbledon, Tipsarevic had won just six matches in eight tournaments before his straight sets defeat to Russian wild card Karen Khachanov on Wednesday.
Khachanov, the European junior champion, was ranked 808th coming into the tournament having made his ATP debut in St Petersburg last month, but he showed no signs of nerves as he fired 14 aces on his way to a 6-4 6-4 victory over an ailing Tipsarevic in just 77 minutes.
The Russian, who beat Albert Ramos in the first round, is the first 17-year-old to reach the quarter-finals of an ATP World Tour event since Kei Nishikori at Indianapolis in 2007.
"I heard Tipsarevic is injured, and I saw it at the beginning of the match," he said. "And the rhythm of the play was absent, so it was hard. He was trying to get winners from the first ball. My serve saved me. Of course, he wasn’t in his best shape, so this is why I wasn’t too happy at the end.
"After the match I asked him if he remembered me as we hit together during the Kremlin Cup two years ago, when he won it. He answered: 'Yes, of course. Congratulations, you’re playing so well'."
Khachanov, who is ranked No.19 in the ITF junior rankings, is now 2-1 in ATP main draw matches after he beat Victor Hanescu in the first round at St Petersburg last month before falling to Lukas Rosol.
The Russian will face either Ivo Karlovic or Denis Istomin in the last eight of his home event and is poised to move up to just outside the top 500. Should he reach the semi-finals in Moscow, Khachanov could break into the world's top 400.