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Hewitt upset by Tsonga in Adelaide

sports Updated: Jan 04, 2008 19:18 IST
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Former world number one Lleyton Hewitt suffered a blow to his Australian Open preparations after he was beaten by Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the quarter-finals of the Adelaide International on Friday.

The top seed was overpowered 6-4 6-2 by Tsonga, who hammered 14 aces on his way to victory in 80 minutes.

"It's frustrating but I've got to look ahead," Hewitt said.

"I still feel like I can play a lot better than that, which is a good thing, and I felt like I had a lot of chances out there. I just didn't serve well on the big points when I needed to and that was the difference."

World number 43 Tsonga beat Hewitt in their only previous meeting, at Queen's Club last June, and once the Frenchman had taken the first set, there was only one winner.

Tsonga broke to lead 3-1 in the second and Hewitt had no answer to his powerful all-court game, losing his serve again in the eighth game to hand Tsonga a place in the last four.

Tsonga now plays Finn Jarkko Nieminen, who needed two hours, 46 minutes to get past American Vince Spadea 7-6 6-7 7-6.

The other semi-final will be between Australian wildcard Joe Sirianni and unseeded Frenchman Michael Llodra.

Sirianni, 32, reached his first ATP Tour semi-final after a stunning 1-6 6-1 7-6 victory over second seed Paul-Henri Mathieu.

"It's amazing, a great feeling," Sirianni said.

"He's 25 in the world, he's playing unbelievable, he's week, in week out, playing against the top players, and I'm just enjoying myself."

Llodra overcame German Benjamin Becker 7-6 6-4.