RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Alexandr Dolgopolov of Ukraine advanced to his second quarterfinals of the year when he beat qualifier Facundo Bagnis of Argentina 6-7 (4), 6-2, 7-6 (4) in the Rio Open on Thursday.
Dolgopolov said he hadn’t considered leaving the tournament to return to his Kiev birthplace, where more than 100 people have died in anti-government protests this week. Government snipers killed at least 70 on Thursday.
“It’s sad. I can’t do much, but just support,” he said. “Whoever is right doesn’t matter now when people are dying.”
Dolgopolov, who lives in the wealthy enclave of Monte Carlo, said he was lucky to have the chance to make money playing tennis.
“Obviously, I would like the people in the country to feel better. If I could, I would change that,” he said.
Dolgopolov will face third-seeded Fabio Fognini, who defeated Pablo Cuevas of Uruguay 7-6 (1), 4-6, 6-3.
Top-ranked Rafael Nadal played fellow Spaniard and friend Albert Montanes in a late match. Nadal is coming back from a back injury picked up in the final of the Australian Open, which he lost against Stanislas Wawrinka.
In the combined ATP-WTA event, fifth-seeded Kurumi Nara of Japan and Lourdes Dominguez Lino of Spain set up a quarterfinal after second-round wins.
Nara defeated Anna-Lena Friedsam of Germany 6-0, 7-6 (3), and was in sight of her first WTA semifinals. Dominguez Lino beat Chanelle Scheepers of South Africa 2-6, 7-6 (7), 6-1.
Nara said she likes the hot weather in Rio and is getting used to the clay.
“Now I like the clay court,” she said. “Last year, I didn’t like it.”
Irina-Camelia Begu of Romania also made the last eight.
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