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Stepanek ends Devvarman's Japan dreams

Somdev Devvarman suffered yet another first round defeat as he lost in straight sets to world No. 24 Radek Stepanek of Czech Republic in the ATP Japan Open Tennis Championships on Monday.

sports Updated: Oct 04, 2011 00:58 IST
Somdev Devvarman

Somdev Devvarman suffered yet another first round defeat as he lost in straight sets to world No. 24 Radek Stepanek of Czech Republic in the ATP Japan Open Tennis Championships here Monday.

The unseeded Indian, ranked 85, lost 4-6, 3-6 to the seventh seed in the singles event of the $1,214,50 hardcourt tournament.

Somdev did create chances but could not convert many of the break points he earned. In all, he managed to get seven chances but converted only two and dropped his serve twice in each of the two sets.

The Indian challenge is still alive in the ATP 500 event with Rohan Bopanna and his Pakistani partner Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi competing in the doubles, who have been given top billing. They will open their campaign against Brazil's Marcelo Melo and Bruno Soares.

Wozniacki moves up
Beijing:
World No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki saw off a tenacious challenge from Lucie Hradecka to open the defence of her China Open title with a 3-6, 6-0, 7-5 first round victory on Monday.

The top seeded Dane struggled to find her rhythm against the powerful Czech's serve in the first set but asserted her superior ranking in the second, only to be forced into fight for survival in a nail-biting decider against the world No. 49.

Local favourite Li Na's shock first round loss on Sunday and the withdrawal of several top stars, including world No. 2 Maria Sharapova, had put a damper on the competition, but organisers will be relieved to see Wozniacki still in the draw.

Austria's Tamira Paszek reached the third round when she rallied past Petra Cetkovska of the Czech Republic 1-6 6-4 6-2. Francesca Schiavone of Italy went out to Slovak Dominika Cibulkova 6-2, 6-2.

Roddick aced out
Beijing:
Andy Roddick was sent packing, 4-6, 5-7 in his opening match at the ATP-WTA China Open by South African Kevin Anderson, joining the eighth seed Alexandr Dolgopolov in making an early exit.

There was also the high-profile withdrawal of Gael Monfils with a knee injury, the ATP confirmed, saying he will also miss next week's Shanghai Masters.

Dolgopolov fell 1-6, 6-1, 0-6 to Italian Flavio Cipolla. Croatia's Marin Cilic defeated China's Wu Di 6-2, 6-0, while Spain's Feliciano Lopez put out Turk Marsel Ilhan 6-2, 7-6 (6).

Li faces wrath of Chinese netizens
Chinese netizens on Monday slammed tennis star Li Na, accusing the French Open champion of taking herself too seriously and not working hard enough after she suffered a humiliating defeat on home turf. Li, Asia's first Grand Slam winner, was defeated 6-4, 6-0 in the first round of the China Open. "She became a champion, and then she was flooded with advertising deals and hundreds of millions in income, so where is the time to train?" one poster said, commenting on her loss.