David Ferrer survives as seeds tumble in Auckland

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david-ferrer-tennisDefending champion David Ferrer survived a scare to reach the quarter-finals of the Auckland Open on Wednesday, as four seeded players exited early in a day of upsets.

The Spanish world number three, top seed this year at the tournament he has won four times, recovered from a sluggish start to down American qualifier Donald Young 6-7 (5/7), 6-3, 6-1.

“It was difficult, I started off very bad making a lot of mistakes,” Ferrer said.

“In the second set I tried to play more focussed, be myself and it worked. In the third one, I could play my tennis.”

German second seed Tommy Haas could not conjure a similar escape, beaten 6-4, 6-4 by big-hitting American wildcard Jack Sock.

Haas’s compatriot Daniel Brands, seeded ninth, lost 7-5, 4-6, 6-3 to another American Bradley Klahn, while California native Steve Johnson was responsible for ousting two high-profile names from the tournament.

Johnson overcame Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis 7-5, 6-7 (3/7), 6-4 in a first-round match rescheduled from Tuesday due to rain, then a few hours later beat South African fourth seed Kevin Anderson 7-5, 6-4.

French sixth seed Benoit Paire lost 6-3, 6-4 to Roberto Bautista Agut of Spain.