Haase solid as a rock
While only twenty years old, Robin Haase moves around Ahoy as if he’s been a centre court regular for years. He combines flair with self confidence and is able to play to the crowd when the situation calls for it. And, of course, he’s quite useful with a racket. Where so many seeded players have failed, the Dutch No 1 has succeeded. Earlier this evening, Haase, who was admitted to the 35th ABN AMRO WTT on the strength of a wildcard, beat Michael Berrer 5-7, 6-3, 6-3. His quarterfinal opponent is left-hander Michael Llodra, who has so far beaten Raemon Sluiter and Nikolay Davydenko.
This is the third time in his short career that Haase has managed to reach the final stages of an ATP tournament. He made it to the semifinals of the Dutch Open in Amersfoort last year, and reached the quarterfinals in Chennai this January. Haase was clearly delighted with his victory, leaping into the air and celebrating abundantly in front of – and with - the 8,000-strong crowd.
Haase kept his supporter in suspense until late in the third set. Every time it seemed as if he’d won a decisive point, he allowed the left-handed German to come back into the match. He lost the opening set despite being the better player. The Dutchman demonstrated his mental resilience in the opening game of the third set by coming back from 0-40 down to take a 3-0 lead. The suspense continued as he again opened the door to his opponent, who gratefully stormed in. Unfazed, Haase regained control once more to take the match.
“I really hope this is not the end,” Haase said afterwards. As far as the Dutchman is concerned, it’s not: “I’m going to take revenge for Raemon.”