Tomas Berdych remains in the hunt for a place in the semi-finals of the ATP Tour Finals after the Czech fifth seed defeated France’s Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 7-5, 3-6, 6-1 at London’s O2 Arena on Wednesday.
Berdych, who lost his opening Group A fixture against Andy Murray, now has to beat world number one Novak Djokovic on Friday to book his place in the last four of the prestigious season-ending event.
The former Wimbledon finalist’s victory also means Djokovic isn’t certain to qualify yet even though the Serb maintained his 100 percent record with a win over Murray earlier on Wednesday.
Tsonga isn’t definitely eliminated but he would need to beat Murray in straight sets and hope Berdych loses by the same margin against Djokovic to advance.
Berdych had beaten Tsonga in both of their meetings this year, including the final of the Stockholm Open, and the 27-year-old was a deserved winner again after a blistering finish.
Tsonga hasn’t defeated a top-eight ranked player this year and once again the flamboyant Frenchman was too inconsistent on the big points.
Earlier, in what is shaping up to be the new top rivalry in tennis, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray whacked the bounce out of the ball for three more grueling sets.
The top-ranked Serb, however, got the big break when he needed it late in the third set and held off Murray 4-6, 6-3, 7-5 at the O2 Arena.Agencies