By Nemanja Bjedov
Marcos Baghdatis lost in the quarterfinals of the ATP World Tour 500 Citi Open in Washington to American John Isner 7-6(5), 4-6, 4-6 late on Friday.
The 28-year-old Cypriot was forced to save three break points in his opening service game, before steadying and eventually forcing a tie-break.
Leading 6-5 in the tie-break, Baghdatis read Isner’s first serve and managed a quality return, prompting a forehand error from the towering American to claim the opener.
Unforced errors proved costly for the Cypriot in the seventh game of the second set, and a double fault on break point gave Isner a crucial 4-3 lead which he used to level the match.
The American then broke through at the same stage in the third set, breaking World No. 44 Baghdatis to love in the seventh game before serving out victory in one hour and 56 minutes.
After returning to winning ways in Washington, Baghdatis will now take part in the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Coupe Rogers in Montreal, which begins on Monday. He has been drawn to face 13th-seed Fabio Fognini of Italy in the opening round.
Fognini leads 2-1 the overall head-to-head series against Baghdatis, with all three of their matches played last year.
The Italian celebrated twice early in the season on clay in Bucharest and at the Rome Masters, while Baghdatis recorded a convincing straight sets victory on hard surface at the Shanghai Masters.
This will be the sixth participation at the Canadian Masters for Baghdatis, whose best result at the event came in 2007 when he reached the third round.
Last season in Toronto he was eliminated by Croatian Marin Cilic in the second round.