Friday’s quarterfinals at the US Men’s Clay Court Championship will include two of the winningest clay court players in 2012 as well as a pair of all-American matches.
Leading off the action will be a battle between two players who have won titles already this season on the ATP World Tour as No. 4 seed Juan Monaco will face No. 5 seed Kevin Anderson.
Monaco claimed the title on clay in Vina del Mar, and is fourth on the ATP circuit for clay court wins this season with an 8-2 mark. Anderson was the title winner on hard courts in Delray Beach.
Houston’s Michael Russell, 33, will be playing his fourth career quarterfinal when he takes on 19-year-old Ryan Harrison, who will be contesting his fifth quarterfinal. For both, this is their first ATP quarterfinal on clay.
Harrison, who is the first teen in the US Men’s Clay Court Championship quarterfinals since Andy Roddick in 2002, is 1-0 against Russell in ATP-level matches, having defeated him in Los Angeles last summer.
John Isner, who is 5-0 on clay in 2012 after four Davis Cup wins and his Thursday victory at River Oaks, will face 2011 US Men’s Clay Court Championship winner Ryan Sweeting on Friday.
While Isner has a clay court winning streak this season, Sweeting has won seven matches in a row at River Oaks. Isner was a straight set winner in their only previous meeting, which came in Delray Beach earlier this year.
The final quarterfinal features Carlos Berlocq against Feliciano Lopez. Berlocq is through to the quarterfinals for the fifth time in as many clay court tournaments, and he is tied for second among ATP players for clay court wins with 12.
Lopez 1-0 defeated Berlocq in three sets in their only previous meeting, which came in Stuttgart in 2007.
This marks the first time since 2006 that four Americans have advanced to the quarterfinals of the US Men's Clay Court Championship.