Canadian Diez tops Sela to advance to 2nd round of U.S. Open qualifiers


Steven Diez of Canada returns the ball. (Nathan Denette/CP)

NEW YORK — Canada’s Steven Diez is one step closer to his first main-draw berth at a Grand Slam after winning his first-round U.S. Open qualifier on Monday.

The Toronto player defeated Dudi Sela of Israel 4-6, 6-4, 6-2 to advance to the second round of qualifying for the final major of the tennis season.

Diez, ranked No. 175, saved 7-of-10 break points and converted on 5 of 8 to down his 167th-ranked opponent.

The 28-year-old Diez needs to win two more qualifying matches this week in order to advance to the U.S. Open main draw, which begins Aug. 26.

Diez will next face 228th-ranked Japanese player Yosuke Watanuki.

Diez’s best career result at a Grand Slam was reaching the third round of qualifiers at the 2016 U.S. Open.

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