Big-serving Frenchman Albano Olivetti knocked off top-seed Sam Barry of Ireland 7-6 (4), 6-1 in the quarterfinals of the French F18 Futures in Mulhouse earlier this afternoon. Olivetti served up 23 aces against the 24-year-old Irishman, including at least one in each of his 10 service games. The 6-foot-8 Frenchman saved all four break points against his serve, including three set points while serving at 5-6 in the opening set. Four aces in the game helped save the day for Olivetti, who steamrolled the rest of the way after forcing a tiebreaker. Olivetti improved to 5-0 against the No. 293-ranked Barry. He will play fellow Frenchman Laurent Lokoli in the semifinals tomorrow. Today’s performance was one of Olivetti’s best since returning to the tour in January, following an 18-month injury hiatus. The 24-year-old Frenchman hung tough in the crucial moments and served his way out of trouble whenever it presented itself. Playing almost exclusively on the Futures and Challenger circuits, Olivetti has clawed his way back from being unranked at the start of the year to a current No. 445 in the world. Barry proved to be a real test in today’s match, at least in the first set anyway. The Irishman landed 91 percent of his first serves in the opener and won 90 percent of those points, while not facing a break point. His only failing was suffering a mini-break on the fifth point in the tiebreaker. The second set was all Olivetti, with the Frenchman capturing service breaks in the second and sixth games, while facing just one break point, that being a harmless one in the final game. Olivetti served three double faults, while winning 78 percent of the points on his first serve and 59 percent on his second.
Olivetti Tops Barry to Reach French F18 Futures Semifinals
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