Croatian tennis no longer has a representative in the individual competition at the ATP Challenger Split Open. After Nino Serdarušić, in the second round on Thursday, Duje Ajduković said goodbye to the competition, as well.
Duje Ajduković failed to repeat the turnaround from the first round when he made up for the set and the "break" minus against Dustin Brown. Against Blaž Role (ATP 165) he saved two match points and returned to the game at the end of the second set, but only briefly. The Slovenian advanced to the quarterfinals with 6:1, 7:5.
Rola played a great match, he gave very little to Ajduković, who simply did not have right solutions.
- I entered the match with a bad tactic, I chose the wrong. I realized late what I needed to do - admitted Ajduković, which especially referred to the forehand of the left-handed Slovenian who was infallible.
- Whatever I played on his forehand, the man would pay me back even faster. Especially through my backhand - added Duje.
Rola served for the match at 5:4 in the second set, he also had two match points, but the longest game in the match still belonged to our tennis player. In the next game, at 5:5, a controversial situation occurred. At 15-0 Ajduković threw the ball in the air for the second serve, at that moment the ball collector ran back to his position, which is why the referee in the chair stopped our player and gave him the first serve. Rola could not come to terms with this, he got into an argument with the judge and called the supervisor, who finally confirmed her decision. After a few minutes break, the game continued in which Duje had 40-15, but unfortunately lost it. The once very successful university tennis player in America took advantage of the second serve for the match and advanced to the final eight.
– Nije to bilo korektno od Role. Situacija je bila jednostavna, a on je iz nje stvorio dramu. Dobio sam poen nakon toga tako da ne mogu reći da je to presudilo – rekao je Ajduković (ATP 308) koji, eto, nije uspio ponoviti lanjsko polufinale Split Opena. Idućeg tjedna imat će novu šansu.
Četvrtfinaliste su kompletirali kvalifikant Mirza Bašić iz BiH koji je sa 7:6 (4), 6:3 svladao Nizozemca Robina Haasea te Australac Thanasi Kokkinakis koji je sa 7:6 (3), 6:1 prekinuo niz Zdeneka Kolara od šest uzastopnih pobjeda. Četvrtfinalni su parovi sljedeći: Žuk – Kokkinakis, Kavčič – Vukić, Petrović – Collarini i Rola – Bašić.