ST. PETERSBURG OPEN
Top Seed Simon Stumbles; Sela Dents Dolgopolov's Finals Bid
St. Petersburg, Russia
by ATP Staff|
Gilles Simon’s Barclays ATP World Tour Finals bid took a hit Monday when he bowed out in his first-round match at the St. Petersburg Open. The top-seeded Frenchman fell to compatriot Adrian Mannarino 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 after two hours and 11 minutes.
The 86th-ranked Mannarino drew level with two breaks of serve in the second set, and secured the decisive break in the opening game of the third. The 23 year old, who claimed his first tour-level win since Wimbledon, had also defeated Simon in their one previous meeting earlier this year at Queen’s Club.
Simon, currently No. 11 in the South African Airways 2011 ATP Year-To-Date Rankings, was looking for his 40th match win of the season.
The Israeli wild card recorded just his eighth match win of the season with a 6-2, 6-2 win over third seed Dolgopolov in 60 minutes. He dropped 14 points in eight service games against the Ukrainian, who is No. 15 in the Battle for London.
Fifth seed Mikhail Youzhny, the 2004 titlist and also a two-time runner-up (2002, 2011), knocked out 2009 champion Sergiy Stakhovsky of Ukraine 6-3, 7-6(7) in one hour and 37 minutes. World No. 34 Youzhny is now 25-8 at the ATP World Tour indoor tennis tournament and also 25-21 on the season.
Italian Potito Starace, currently No. 54 in the South African Airways 2011 ATP Rankings, won 52 of 70 total points to defeat Russian wild card Ivan Nedelko 6-0, 6-1 in 45 minutes. It was the 150th tour-level match win of his career.