Stakhovsky is a very good player indoors. Report from someone who was there:
OK. Well let's start with the Evo match which was remarkable to say the least. Both players served exceptionally well, particularly under pressure and as I think someone noted, there were 21 BPs in the 1st two sets and only 1 was taken. That one was taken by Evo in the 1st set and was the difference between two evenly matched players. On set point, Evo went for a backhand down the line which was called out. He turned to pick up his towel and as an after thought, waved his hand at the umpire for a challenge. As he did so, he looked at coach Julien and said, "don't know why I've done that, I think it was out. Actually I know it was out." It was a very sheepish grin on his face when hawk eye showed it clipping the line.
Three times in the second set, Evo had 15-40 on the Stakhovsky serve but had very few opportunities to convert. Most were saved with big serves and there were only really two where Evo had a chance. The first, at 15-40, he went for a forehand return down the line and netted. "That wasn't stupid, that was lunacy" was his own comment about his shot selection. The next point at 30-40 was the only BP that he got into a rally, and Stakhovsky won it with a net chord. Had that ball gone in the net, Evo would have won the match IMHO.
Having said all that, Evo himself held 3 times from 0-40 with some awesome serving. Sadly, his serve deserted him slightly in the tiebreak where he DFed twice and there were more DFs in his early service games in set 3. That was really the only difference. At 5-1 down, Evo started a fightback and finally got another break. However, at 5-4 down, and needing another break, Stakhovsky finished the match off to love with service winner, ace, ace, ace. It summed up the match.
Both players played a great match and it really could have gone either way. Evo had his game face on right from the off and proved again that he absolutely belongs at this level.
Still encouraging that Dan is looking completely at home in these events and sounds like he was very unlucky not to win today - Stakhovsky just really stepped it up on the break points in the second. Could really have gone either way.