Fri, Jun 12, 2009 - Page 19 News List

Murray eases past Seppi as Hewitt rallies to defeat Gil

AP , LONDON

Andy Murray hits a forehand shot to Andreas Seppi during their second-round match at Queen’s Club in west London on Wednesday.

PHOTO: AFP

Top-seeded Andy Murray beat Andreas Seppi of Italy 6-1, 6-4 on Wednesday in the second round in the grass-court tournament at Queen’s Club.

Seppi double-faulted on break point at 1-1, and Murray went on to lose only three points in the last four games of the first set.

The Italian recovered an early break in the second set, but Murray was never under any real pressure and broke again for the match when Seppi sent a forehand long.

Murray will play 16th-seeded Guillermo Garcia-Lopez of Spain, who downed Gilles Muller of Luxembourg 7-6 (3), 6-3.

“I started the match very well,” said Murray, who lost to Seppi in their only previous grass-court match three years ago. “I returned well. My serve could have been a little bit better, but I was happy with the way I moved and I didn’t make too many errors.”

Lleyton Hewitt, seeded 15th, rallied to beat Frederico Gil of Portugal 3-6, 6-2, 6-2 to set up a match against No. 2 Andy Roddick.

Both are former four-time champions.

Nicolas Mahut of France upset fifth-seeded Marin Cilic of Croatia 7-6 (1), 7-6 (4).

Fourteenth-seeded Mikhail Youzhny of Russia defeated Marcos Baghdatis of Cyprus 6-4, 7-6 (3), and Belgium’s Steve Darcis overcame Alberto Martin of Spain 6-2, 6-4.

Seventh-seeded Marat Safin of Russia withdrew with a back injury and was replaced in the draw by South Africa’s Rik De Voest.

Fourth-seeded Gael Monfils of France also pulled out with a wrist injury, giving Darcis a walkover into the quarter-finals.

■GERRY WEBER OPEN

AP, HALLE, GERMANY

Tommy Haas beat fourth-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-3, 7-6 (3) on Wednesday to advance to the quarter-finals of the Gerry Weber Open, capping a fine day for Germans and a disastrous one for seeded players.

In an earlier upset, Mischa Zverev rallied to defeat fifth-seeded Tomas Berdych 3-6, 6-2, 7-6 (8).

The other two seeded players in action, No. 6 Dmitry Tursunov and No. 8 Rainer Schuettler, also tumbled out.

Haas, a 31-year-old veteran who is working his way back after shoulder surgery, got a wild card into the grass-court event. His experience showed against Tsonga, a Frenchman with a flashy but inconsistent game.

“I played as well as I can, especially on the big points,” Haas said. “We both played extremely well. To beat a top-10 player shows that I have to be reckoned with.”

Roger Federer on Tuesday pulled out of the tournament, where he usually begins his grass-court ­preparations for Wimbledon, saying he was “overwhelmed” and “exhausted” after his French Open win.

■AEGON CLASSIC

AP, BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND

Maria Sharapova’s bid to reach the third round of the Aegon Classic was held up by rain on Wednesday, with the former Wimbledon champion leading Alexa Glatch 6-3, 5-4 before a downpour halted play.

Sharapova twice held match point but was unable to close them out and play was suspended for the day with 19-year-old Glatch holding an advantage point on her own service game.

Playing only her third tournament since being sidelined for 10 months with a shoulder injury, Sharapova had to work hard to contain a promising young player on the verge of the top 100, who mixed slice and topspin well and looked to be growing in confidence.

There was enough match time on Wednesday for India’s Sania Mirza to beat 11th-seeded British No. 1, Anne Keothavong 6-1, 7-6 (5).

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