Fri, Jul 16, 2010 - Page 19 News List

Wild-card gives Soderling fright

BATTLING ONRobin Soderling joins third seed David Ferrer of Spain, Andreas Seppi of Italy and Uruguay’s Pablo Cuevas in the last eight in Bastad

AP , BASTAD, SWEDEN

Russia’s Ksenia Pervak returns to Barbora Zahlavova Strycova of the Czech Republic during their second-round match at the Prague Open on Wednesday.

PHOTO: EPA

Top-seeded Robin Soderling of Sweden was taken to three sets by compatriot Andreas Vinciguerra in the second round of the Swedish Open on Wednesday.

The defending champion, playing his first match at the clay-court tournament after being given a first-round bye, hit 15 aces on his way to a 6-2, 6-7 (6/8), 6-2 victory over the wild-card and will play Italy’s Andreas Seppi in the quarter-finals.

Third-seeded David Ferrer of Spain and Uruguay’s Pablo Cuevas also will meet in the last eight after winning their matches on Tuesday.

The No. 5-ranked Soderling broke Vinciguerra’s serve in the second and eighth games of the match to take the first set easily.

Soderling, who reached the final of the French Open on clay last month, squandered two match-points in the second set — which Vinciguerra won on a tiebreak — but recovered to claim the third.

Seppi advanced after beating Potito Starace 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (9/7) in an all-Italian match on center court.

Ferrer, who won the title in 2007, defeated Fabio Fognini of Italy 6-3, 7-5, winning 12 of the last 13 points to seal victory.

Cuevas had a routine 6-4, 6-2 win over Spain’s Pere Riba.

Second-seeded Fernando Verdasco, who was also given a first-round bye, was scheduled to enter the tournament yesterday when he faced France’s Stephane Robert.

■PRAGUE OPEN

AP, PRAGUE

Top-seeded Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic withdrew with a left thigh muscle injury before her second-round match against Sweden’s Johanna Larsson at the Prague Open on Wednesday.

“It was painful even before the tournament, but it got worse after the first round,” said Safarova, who beat Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia 6-4, 7-5 in the opening round on Tuesday.

Safarova will rest until next Friday when the result of a check determines whether she will be able to join the hard-court season in the US.

Larsson will now face eighth-seeded Czech player Barbora Zahlavova Strycova, who overcame Ksenia Pervak of Russia 2-6, 6-4, 6-2.

Anna Tatishvili of Georgia also advanced to the quarter-finals by beating Eva Hrdinova of the Czech Republic 6-4, 6-3.

■PALERMO OPEN

AP, PALERMO, ITALY

Top-seeded Flavia Pennetta of Italy beat Renata Voracova in straight sets in the second round of the Palermo Open.

The defending champion defeated the Czech Republic’s Voracova 6-0, 6-3 to join fellow seeded players Julia Goerges and Jill Craybas in the third round.

Fourth-seeded Craybas of the US rallied to beat Bulgaria’s Tsvetana Pironkova 2-6, 6-2, 6-2 and eighth-seeded Goerges of Germany enjoyed her second win in as many days when she saw off Italy’s Corinna Dentoni 6-4, 6-3.

In Wednesday’s other match, Spanish qualifier Nuria Llagostera Vives upset ninth-seeded Alberta Brianti of Italy 7-6 (8/6), 6-2.

■MERCEDES CUP

AP, STUTTGART, GERMANY

Simon Greul of Germany upset France’s Gilles Simon in straight sets to reach the quarter-finals of the Mercedes Cup.

The 73rd-ranked Greul beat Simon, a former top 10 player now ranked No. 33 in the world, 6-4, 7-5 in the second round on Wednesday and will next face Juan Carlos Ferrero of Spain or Argentina’s Horacio Zeballos.

Zeballos was leading their contest 7-6 (7/1), 6-6 when play was suspended for the day because of bad light.

Second-seeded Juergen Melzer of Austria defeated Germany’s Mischa Zverev 7-5, 7-5 to set up a last-eight match with fifth-seeded Albert Montanes of Spain, who beat Argentina’s Juan Ignacio Chela 7-5, 3-6, 6-2.

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