Mardy Fish appeared sluggish, agitated and uninspired on Wednesday at the Australian Open in a four-set loss to Colombia’s Alejandro Falla, falla-ing 7-6(4), 6-3, 7-6(6).
“It’s my responsibility to put it behind me, you know, but I’m a human being,” said Fish on being bothered by Falla repeatedly asking for the trainer. “I see that guy’s called the trainer three, four times, however many times he was out there. It’s hot. And I;m down two sets to love, and I’m looking for anything to sort of gain the momentum a little bit…I didn’t get angry with the chair umpire. Just asked him how many times the guy is allowed to come for cramps.”
Top 10 seeds into the third round Wednesday were (2) Rafael Nadal straight-setting Tommy Haas, (3) Roger Federer receiving a walkover from German Andreas Beck who suffered a back injury, (7) Tomas Berdych topping Olivier “The Roach” Rochus in straights, and (10) Nicolas Almagro outlasting Grigor Dimitrov 6-0 in the fifth.
No. 16 seed John Isner survived a match point in a five-set win over David Nalbandian, triumphing 10-8 in the fifth.
“It was a lot of fun, first off,” Isner, who had to overcome cramping in the fifth set, said of the marathon match. “Very similar to my match here last year where I lost 9-7 in the fifth on that same court. So I tried. I told myself I didn’t want to repeat that effort. I wanted to actually win that one. It felt really, really good to win it.”
Unseeded Aussie teen Bernard Tomic continued his roll on Wednesday, losing the first set but defeating American Sam Querrey in four.
“The first set was very strange,” Tomic said. “He played very good, and I started questioning myself if he’s going to keep serving and playing like this whether I have a chance. But I got lucky, and he didn’t serve as good in the second. He gave me confidence.”
On the women’s side No. 10 seed Francesca Schiavone was tripped-up by an Italian countrywoman who knew her game well when Romina Oprandi beat the former French Open champ 6-4, 6-3.
Other upset victims were (16) Peng Shuai, who lost in straights to Czech Iveta Benesova, and (32) Petra Cetkovska, who fell to the hot-handed German Mona Barthel in straights.
Cruising into the third round in straight sets Wednesday were (1) Caroline Wozniacki edging past Anna Tatishvili 6-1, 7-6(4), (3) Victoria Azarenka dropping only one game against Aussie wildcard Casey Dellacqua, (5) Li Na easily defeating Aussie wildcard Olivia Rogowska, and (8) Agnieszka Radwanska easing past Argentine qualifier Paula Ormaechea.
“It’s just a small blister,” said Wozniacki on dealing with a foot issue during the match. “It was good just to tape it up and make sure that it was okay…I thought the first set I played pretty well. I stayed aggressive and made her run. Second set, she went a bit more for her shots, and I stepped back a little bit and she punished me for that.”
In former No. 1 action, (11) “Aussie” Kim Clijsters allowed France’s Stephanie Foretz Gacon only one game, and (13) Jelena Jankovic handled Taipei qualifier Chang Kai-Chen in straights.
Matches to look for Thursday at the Australian Open include (15) Andy Roddick vs. Lleyton Hewitt, (4) Maria Sharapova vs. American Jamie Hampton, Jelena Dokic vs. (9) Marion Bartoli, (9) Janko Tipsarevic vs. hot-handed Aussie James Duckworth, American Ryan Sweeting vs. (5) David Ferrer, (14) Sabine Lisicki vs. Shahar Peer, American Sloane Stephens vs. (18) Svetlana Kuznetsova, and Michael Llodra vs. (32) Alex Bogomolov Jr.
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Tennis-X Blog: Roddick, Schiavone Sliding Along on Grass Wednesday; Thursday Previews
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