Federer Cuts Magician in Half, Moya Ousted at Australian Open

Posted on January 17, 2005

World No. 1 Roger Federer gave a dominating display Monday on Rod Laver Arena, putting up with no silliness from the slicing and dicing Fabrice "The Original Magician" Santoro in routing the Frenchman 6-1, 6-1, 6-2.

"I think the start of the match was important for me, you know. That set the tone for the rest," said Federer who looked to stay out of prolonged rallies. "I never really gave him a chance to get back into the match. So best-of-five, an easy three-setter sometimes they look very, very easy, but I always had the feeling I still had to play some good points to win them, especially against him. He gets back a lot of balls."

In one of two upsets on the day, former Aussie Open runner-up Carlos Moya made his first opening-round exit since 1999, losing to Spanish countryman Guillermo "G-Lo" Garcia-Lopez. Moya had edged G-Lo 7-6 in the third set two weeks back in Chennai in the only previous tour meeting between the practice partners, with Moya looking in the mirror at an even-bigger forehand.

Belgian Olivier "The Roach" Rochus delivered the second upset, continuing his early-season hot start with a 6-3-in-the-third win over (21) Nicolas Kiefer.

Other seeded winners Monday were (4) Marat Safin (d. (Q) Djokovic, dropping only three games), (8) Andre Agassi (d. (Q) Kindlmann 6-0 in the third), (10) Gaston Gaudio (d. Justin "Time to Gag" Gimelstob), (11) Joachim "The Jackhammer" Johansson (d. Schalken), (13) Tommy "The R." Robredo (d. Draper in four), (16) Tommy Haas (d. Xavier "X-Man" Malisse), (20) Dominik "The Dominator" Hrbaty (d. Soderling who retired in the third with injury), (24) Feliciano "F-Lo" Lopez (d. Baccanello), (22) Ivan Ljubicic (d. Luis "Me So" Horna), (27) Paradorn "The Thai Fighter" Srichaphan (d. "You Say" Potito Starace in four), (28) Mario "Baby Goran" Ancic (d. O.Hernandez), (29) Taylor "Make a" Dent (d. Serra), and former champ (30) Thomas "Tommy the J." Johansson (d. Luczak 6-0 in the fifth).

"Today felt like a nightmare, I would say," Johansson said after the unique bagel-in-the-fifth win. "I was very, very nervous in the beginning, and I was very tight. Peter (Luczak), I think he's a solid baseline player. That's pretty much the worst you can play if you feel like you cannot hit the ball."

Andre Agassi, after fighting some initial stiffness in his hip, rolled his qualifier opponent to move into the second round.

"It held up all right," said Agassi of the hip injury he sustained last week at the Kooyong exhibition. "You know, today I woke up feeling the best-yet since it's happened. And with the assurance that I'm not going to sort of pull anything bad, I had the green light to push through anything I might be feeling. And that's what I did, I just pushed through a bit of stiffness, and then I felt like it loosened up nicely and I was okay."

Un-seeds into the second round were Americans Mardy "Silver" Fish (d. Juan "The Principality" Monaco 7-6 in the fifth) and Kevin Kim (d. H.-T. Lee 6-1 in the fifth), French wunderkind Gael "Force" Monfils (d. Robby "Baby Courier" Ginepri in four), Dutchman Peter Wessels (d. Y.H. Lu), Germans Bjorn Phau (d. former slam champ Al Costa) and Rainer "Shine" Schuettler (d. Olivier "All We Need is Just a Little" Patience), Japan's (Q) Takao Suzuki (d. Gambill, setting up a match-up with Federer), Fin Jarkko Nieminen (d. Sanguinetti in four), Slovak Karol Beck (d. (WC) Reid, dropping only five games -- watch for more Aussie-tennis-in-the-crapper headlines), Cyprus' (Q) Marcos "Bombs Over" Baghdatis (d. Luzzi in five), Armenian Sargis "Sarge" Sargsian (d. D.Sanchez in five), Czechs (Q) Tomas Zib (d. Wang), Michal Tabara (d. Enqvist in four) and Bohdan "The Settlement" Ulihrach (d. "Dr." Ivo Karlovic in four), Serb Janko Tipsarevic (d. (Q) Daniele "Choppin'" Bracciali in four), and Argentine Agustin Calleri (d. Max "The Beast" Mirnyi in five).

For the former junior No. 1 Monfils it was his first main draw slam win in his first slam appearance.

Tuesday's schedule in Melbourne is (6) Coria vs. Tomas "I've Beaten Federer" Berdych, (2) Roddick vs. Irakli "Freak Show" Labadze, (3) Hewitt vs. Clement, Chris "Penthouse" Guccione vs. (12) Canas, Ferrer vs. (9) Nalbandian, (25) Chela vs. Wayne "The Serving Machine" Arthurs, Julien "United Colors of" Benneteau vs. Rafael "The Prodigy" Nadal, (7) Henman vs. Saulnier, (23) Fernando "Gonzo" Gonzalez vs. Acasuso, Dupuis vs. (18) Nicolas "The Golden Child" Massu, Bjorkman vs. "Grinning" Greg Rusedski, Florian "Oscar" Mayer vs. Blake, Burgsmuller vs. Andreev, Calatrava vs. Ventura in an all-ESP(not N), (15) Youzhny vs. Haehnel, Kimmich vs. Zabaleta, Ricardo Mello "Yello" vs. Al Martin, Volandri vs. Hanescu, Reynolds vs. Almagro, Christophe "The Roach" Rochus vs. Al Montanes, Fernando "Hot Sauce" Verdasco vs. Muller, Mathieu vs. Carraz in an all-French, (19) Spadea vs. Stepanek, Flavio "Of the Day" Saretta vs. Healey, Marach vs. Lisnard, Karanusic vs. (26) Davydenko, (14) Grosjean vs. Llodra in an all-French, Van Gemerden vs. (31) Ferrero, Olivier "Mucus" Mutis vs. (17) Pavel, (32) Jurgen "Tuna" Melzer vs. "Everybody Loves" Raemon Sluiter, Mantilla vs. Hernych, and Carlsen vs. Kohlschreiber.