India's Somdev Devvarman notched up a stunning 6-3, 7-6 (7/4) victory over defending champion Alexandr Dolgopolov to advance to the pre-quarterfinals of the ATP 500 Citi Open on Wednesday.
The 104 world ranking spots that seperates Somdev from Ukranian ninth seed Dolgopolov didn't matter much as the world number 129 Indian rode on his aces in the second round battle.
Somdev, who has a career-best ranking of 62, blasted nine aces against five by world number 25 Dolgopolov in the match and connected on 52 per cent of his first serves in opening set and 51 per cent in the second set.
Somdev double faulted just once, compared to Dolgopolov who double-faulted eight times in the match. The 28-year-old, who had to make his way through the qualifiers, is likely to take on US eighth seed John Isner on Thursday in the last 16.
"I'm very happy. That guy is a tough player, no question. I played really well. in the beginning. he gave me a couple errors to break him," said Somdev, a two-time US college champion.
"He fought back in the second set. I was serving well. It kept me in the match. I gave myself looks on his serve. It was just confidence," he added.
Somdev, won the Commonwealth Games gold in Delhi and both men's singles and doubles gold in the 2010 Asian Games in China, said he was feeling good about his game.
"I'm pretty sharp. Physically for sure," said the Arjuna awardee.