ATP: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga’s O2 hopes take a hit


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Jo-Wilfried Tsonga has seen his hopes of qualifying for the ATP World Tour Finals suffer a big blow following his defeat in the semi-finals of Austrian Open.

Had he been victorious, the French ace would have replaced Roger Federer at seventh in the rankings, but a surprise loss to 63rd-ranked Robin Haase 7-5 7-6 (7-4) has denied him the opportunity.

To add insult to injury, with his compatriot Richard Gasquet advancing to the final of the Kremlin Cup, Tsonga will drop out of the top eight altogether. However, with Andy Murray injured, finishing ninth in the rankings will be sufficient to qualify for the prestigious season-ending event at London’s O2 Arena.

Tsonga will still have work to do of course as Milos Raonic and Tommy Haas are both in contention to finish in the top nine, sitting in 11th and 12th in the rankings respectively.

Raonic’s hopes were dented by a quarter-final defeat to Benoit Paire in Stockholm, but Haas’ defeat of Lukas Rosol in Vienna means he now faces Tsonga’s conqueror Haase in the final. Winning this will significantly boost the German’s chances of reaching the Tour Finals, which are due to take place from November 4-11.

On Monday, when the latest rankings are released, Tsonga will now find himself in ninth place, behind Federer and Gasquet, although the order of the latter two will depend on whether Gasquet wins the Kremlin Cup by beating home favourite Mikhail Kukushkin on Sunday.

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