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Chela To Play Seppi In Bucharest QFs

Bucharest, Romania

Chela© Raed KrishanJuan Ignacio Chela won the Bucharest singles and doubles titles in 2010.

Top seed Juan Ignacio Chela made a strong start in his defence of the BRD Nastase Tiriac Trophy on Wednesday.

Chela dropped 11 points on serve to beat French qualifier Florent Serra 6-1, 6-0 in just 63 minutes. The 32-year-old Argentine improved to 23-12 on clay courts this year.

"I'm very happy to win my first match here," said Chela. "He's a dangerous player and I didn't know how I would start after all the excitement during the last weekend in Serbia with the Argentinean Davis Cup team. It is a beautiful feeling to come back here as the defending champion after winning both singles and doubles in Bucharest last year."

He will next meet seventh-seeded Italian Andreas Seppi, who became the first player to reach the last eight when he beat Igor Andreev of Russia 6-2, 3-6, 6-1.

Seppi saved nine of 10 break points, winning 70 per cent of his service points for victory in one hour and 46 minutes. It was Seppi's first win over Andreev in more than four years (2-6 lifetime). Two-time Bucharest finalist Andreev dropped to a 16-25 match record on the season.

Spaniard Pere Riba advanced to the second round when sixth-seeded Italian Potito Starace retired due to fatigue midway through the second set. Riba was leading 6-1, 3-2 after one hour of play. World No. 72 Riba, who also beat Starace at the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters in April, has a 10-19 season mark.

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