The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Srichaphan bites the dust

Hamburg: Paradorn Srichaphan did not grow up playing on clay courts and it was painfully obvious on Monday when the seventh-seeded Thai lost 4-6, 3-6 to Feliciano Lopez of Spain in the opening round of the Hamburg Masters.

Lopez is an accomplished clay-court player and he raced to a 4-0 lead before Srichaphan began making some shots.

He fought back to 4-3 but lost the game when he could not retrieve a drop volley by the Spaniard.

“I almost broke him back for 4-4,” Srichaphan said. “I hit the ball well but he brought back a lot of balls.”

In other first-round matches, 12th-seeded Guillermo Coria of Argentina defeated Vincent Spadea of the US 6-2, 6-2 and David Sanchez of Spain rallied to beat American Mardy Fish 5-7, 6-4, 6-2.

Also, Wayne Ferreira of South Africa ousted Alexander Waske of Germany 6-3, 6-2 and Finland’s Jarkko Nieminen beat Stefan Koubek of Austria 6-4, 0-6, 6-1.

Srichaphan has won only two matches in five clay-court tournaments this year.

“It is tough for me. I did not grow up on clay,” he said. “But I still try to enjoy it. Last year I did not win a match on clay until the French Open.

First hurdle fells Dokic

In Rome, four-time champion Conchita Martinez defeated ninth-seeded Jelena Dokic 6-4, 3-6, 7-5 on Monday in the first round of the $1.3 million Italian Open. American qualifier Ashley Harkleroad was beaten by Frenchwoman Nathalie Dechy 6-1, 3-6, 2-6. American Laura Granville eliminated 15th-seeded countrymate Meghann Shaughnessy 7-5, 6-3. (AP)

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