Groth grinds out win over Cabal

Groth grinds out win over Cabal

Samuel Groth survived an almighty challenge from local hope Juan Sebastian Cabal, to progress at the Claro Open Colombia on Tuesday.

The Australian served for the match at 5-4 in the second set, having yet to face a break point for the encounter in Bogota, only for Cabal to manufacture one chance and take it.

Groth then wasted three match points in the second-set tie-break, and blew a break lead in the decider before prevailing 6-3 6-7 (10-12) 7-6 (7-4) over the Colombian wildcard.

The match lasted two hours 21 minutes, and Groth will have to back up from the lengthy contest against top seed Richard Gasquet, who enjoyed a bye past the first round.

Earlier, there was better news for the local contingent at the hard-court tournament, as fifth seed Alejandro Falla and sixth seed Alejandro Gonzalez progressed.

Falla, runner-up at the ATP 250 event in 2013, was too good for Japan's Tatsuma Ito 6-3 6-2, and the left-hander set up a second-round date with Australian wildcard Bernard Tomic.

Gonzalez won his first match at his home event at the second time of asking, progressing past Russia's Evgeny Donskoy 7-5 3-6 6-4 in two hours 20 minutes.

Next up for Medellin native Gonzalez is Dutchman Thiemo de Bakker, who saved a match point before seeing off American qualifier Kevin King 2-6 7-6 (7-4) 6-3.

Serving at 5-6 in the second set, De Bakker was one point from defeat only for him to deny King a maiden tour-level victory as he won through in just over two hours.

Israel's Dudi Sela was a 6-4 6-2 victor over Argentina's Facundo Arguello in under an hour, to set up a second-round date with defending champion and second seed Ivo Karlovic.

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