CW Herald - Tallahassee
Comback kids move on while Langley meets his demise
Meat Loaf once sang "Two Out of Three Ain't Bad", but that was little consolation for Rick Langley as he was beaten in straight sets by fifth seed Hugh James. A finalist last week in Baton Rouge, Langley was not good enough to beat the World No. 1 doubles player who prevailed in a tight match.
The unseeded Westerner played positive tennis, but failed to capitalise on 4-2 and 5-3 leads in the first set as James secured key breaks back and the tiebreaker 9-7. That weakened Langley's resolve, and the World No. 126 fell down a break quickly and could never claw his way back as James advanced 7-6(7), 6-3.
Meanwhile the comeback trail continued for Brett Read as he came from a set down to oust Aleksander Alitspritsin of Lithuania. In a tense first set, Read still didn't look entirely match fit but his experience allowed him to get out of some tricky situations to come back from 0-4 down to be 4-4.
The comeback was for naught as the Lithuanian took the first set 6-4, but it set the tone for Read's comeback as the fourth seed lifted his game considerably. He's not at his best yet, but he's giving himself a good chance as he secured a 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 win with a cracking forehand winner to suggest he might just be back in the habit. He now plays Baton Rouge, LA champion Randy Bruce who trounced Eric Henson one and three.
The erratic career of Ishan Narang continued on Thursday as the wildcard entrant easily beat Adam Murray in straight sets. Whispers of police being called to his hotel room on Wednesday night did little to affect Narang as he destroyed Murray 6-3, 6-1.
Murray was totally done in by Narang's big serving as the lanky Indian-born player hit nine aces in eight games in a clinical win. He still made errors, but he was rarely troubled by the World No. 119 in a three and one win. He now meets Croatia's Adem Tadić who ousted eighth seed Felipe Menon 6-4, 6-3.
The top half is all American ensuring one local in the final after wildcard entrant Dean Delgado beat top seed Ivan Češljar in a three-set upset 6-2, 3-6, 7-6(3).