Rio de Janeiro - Rising Austrian star
Dominic Thiem reached the quarter-finals of the Rio Open on Wednesday with a
7-5, 7-5 victory over Argentina's Diego Schwartzman.
The fifth-seeded Thiem, the youngest player
in the ATP's top 20 at age 22, was about the only bright spot on a rain-soaked
day that saw the match between No 2 seed
David Ferrer and fellow Spaniard Albert Ramos-Vinolas rained out.
Much of the rest of the playing schedule
was also washed out in the third straight day of rain in Rio de Janeiro.
Third-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France
got in his first-round match early, but was beaten 6-3, 3-6, 6-4 by Brazilian
Thiem had his problems with the rain, too.
He took the first set, and got to 3-3 in the second when a downpour hit. He had
to wait for over an hour to finish the match.
"It was not very nice to go into the
rain delay because I almost had the match," Thiem said.
The Austrian won on clay in Buenos Aires
last week and beat the king of clay - Rafael Nadal - in the semifinals. He then
defeated another Spaniard Nicolas Almagro in the final for his fourth ATP
singles title - all on clay.
"These are exactly the matches I need
to improve," Thiem said. "I saw last week that I can beat the big
Tsonga has had a tough week in Brazil. The
Frenchman's doubles match was rained out on Monday and his singles match
against Monteiro was washed out on Tuesday.
"It was good for me to be here,"
Tsonga said. "It was good experience for me anyway, even if it was
difficult for me."
Top-seeded Nadal plays compatriot Almagro
on Thursday in the second round, and No 2 Ferrer will face Ramos-Vinolas.
On the women's side of the combined ATP-WTA
event, fifth-seeded Polona Hercog of Slovenia was beaten 7-5, 7-6 (3) by Sorana
Cirstea of Romania in a second-round match.