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Davydenko Beats Harrison; Petzschner Opens Account

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Davydenko© Ron AngleNikolay Davydenko won the title in 2009.

Fifth-seeded Russian Nikolay Davydenko, the 2009 titlist, saved nine of 12 break points to beat American Ryan Harrison 6-3, 6-2 on Tuesday at the Malaysian Open, Kuala Lumpur 2011.

"I was winning the long rallies in the beginning," said Davydenko, who improved to a 21-20 match record on the season. "After 4-0, I started to get tired and I couldn't hold the same level. Then I lost my serve quite easy, my legs were getting heavy. I tried to do everything on court to survive and win the match. It doesn't matter how you feel or play, you just have to win. It was 6-3, 6-2 today but for me it was tough. The court and balls are slow here. It was really tough to hit any winners with these conditions."

Philipp Petzschner made his tournament debut by defeating fellow German Mischa Zverev 7-5, 6-3 in the first round. World No. 66 Petzschner notched his 22nd win of the season (22-19), but not without a struggle. The 27 year old, a finalist in Halle in June, squandered a double break lead in the first set before breaking for a third time to clinch it. A more solid second set saw him break Zverev’s serve twice to prevail in 72 minutes.

"I started really well, I had a break point for 5-0 in the first set and didn't take it," reflected Petzschner. "Then I played a terrible game at 4-2 and all of a sudden it's close again. But I played a solid end of first set and then as well in the second set, without facing any break points. It's great to get through the first match. The tournament is really nice. Some of the European players are having problems with the jet lag a little bit, but I'm really happy with my performance on court today."

Eighth seed Kei Nishikori battled past Russian qualifier Teymuraz Gabashvili 3-6, 6-4, 6-1. Elsewhere, top seed Nicolas Almagro, who received a bye through the opening round, learned that his first opponent will be fellow Spaniard Albert Ramos. The No. 80-ranked Ramos was leading Mikhail Kukushkin 4-6, 6-3, 4-2 when the Kazakhstani was forced to retire due to illness.

India's Somdev Devvarman set a second-round clash with Marcos Baghdatis after edging Russian qualifier Mikhail Ledovskikh 7-6(5), 6-4 in one hour and 39 minutes. World No. 89 Devvarman claimed his first win since the start of August, when he reached the second round in Washington before falling to Baghdatis.

"He's [Ledovskikh] had some quality wins this week in qualifying so I'm just happy to be through," said Devvarman. "I'm still not 100 per cent with my shoulder, but I wanted to give myself a chance by coming here to Kuala Lumpur. There's some really good trainers that the ATP has and I'm just really happy to be pain free on the court today and to complete the match."

"I have Baghdatis next. I'll have to play really good tennis to beat him. I will have to play aggressively against him because if he gets on the front foot he's very tough to beat."

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