Raonic makes a place into last eight of Chennai Open

Chennai: Canadian fourth seed Milos Raonic brushed aside Romanian Victor Hanescu 6-1, 6-4 to move into the quarterfinals of the 2012 Aircel Chennai Open at the SDAT-Nungambakkam Tennis Stadium on Wednesday.

World No. 31 Raonic served with gusto and whipped in the big points with confidence to wrap up the match in 74 minutes at a packed Centre Court.

"I am happy that everything I had worked on during off-season came together tonight. I just stayed with myself and did not start flat-footed," Raonic said.

The 21-year-old Raonic rose from 156 to a career-high 25 in 2011 and was adjudged the ATP Newcomer of the Year and is regarded the as the new rising star on the tennis horizon.

"I have been focusing on my returns, especially the second ball after the serve, to keep my opponent under pressure. I know I have strong legs, but am working on developing my upper body strength," he added.

The Canadian, who advanced to the 2011 Australian Open fourth round, broke Hanescu, ranked 90 in the world, in the second and sixth games to clinch the opening set in 27 minutes.

The 30-year-old Hanescu, who beat American Sam Querrey in the first round, had won the only earlier meeting between the two players at the 2010 World Tour Masters 1000 in Canada.

Raonic saved four break points in the second game of the second set and broke his opponent in the seventh game and sealed the match with his ninth ace. The Canadian will meet Israeli Dudi Sela in the quarterfinals.

Asked about his prospects of winning the tournament, he said: "Winning the tournament is still a long way off, but I believe I have the ability to do so, but I need to get better. I demand a lot of myself."