Isner Wins, Bryans Fall in Auckland
AUCKLAND, New Zealand -- Former champion Philipp Kohlschreiber took advantage of a late change in the draw to beat qualifier Inigo Cervantes-Huegun 6-2, 6-3 Tuesday to reach the second round of the Heineken Open.
The fifth-seeded German was originally drawn to play former world No. 3 David Nalbandian but the Argentinian withdrew from the tournament Monday with an abdominal strain. Spain’s Cervantes-Huegun, who had been beaten in the last round of qualifying, moved into the main draw as a lucky loser.
“I expected a tough match today (against Nalbandian) and I was more nervous than usual but maybe he was not 100 percent,” Kohlschreiber said. “Still, I was looking to play a good match and it was nice to be out here.”
Former world No. 4 Sebastian Grosjean was also a beneficiary of Nalbandian’s late withdrawal, inheriting Nalbandian’s wild card and beating Germany’s Florian Mayer 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 to advance to the second round.
The win was Grosjean’s third in three matches against Mayer, including his 2004 victory in the quarterfinals at Wimbledon.
Big-serving American John Isner beat Spain’s Guillermo Garcia-Lopez 4-6, 7-6 (3), 6-2. Isner previously lost to Garcia-Lopez at San Jose in 2008 in three sets, all tiebreakers, including a third which finished 13-11 in the Spaniard’s favor.
“That left a bitter taste in my mouth and I was glad to exact some revenge today,” Isner said.
After a shaky start, Isner sent down 11 aces to win in just over two hours.
“I want to apologize for the way we both played in the first set. It was bad tennis,” Isner said. “The second set could have gone either way but once I got that under my belt I felt a lot better.”
Isner’s second-round opponent will be seventh-seeded Argentine Juan Monaco who used an improved serve to beat compatriot Horacio Zeballos 6-3, 6-0.
“I was practicing so much my serve before coming down here -- like 30 days -- so I was very happy because I was serving so well today,” Monaco said. “I played very well.”
Monaco said his second-round match would be more testing.
“Isner is very difficult because you can’t get any rhythm going against him. He just serves very well,” he said.
Eighth-seeded Alberto Montanes of Spain beat Australian qualifier James Lemke 6-1, 7-5.
American brothers Bob and Mike Bryan, the world’s top-ranked doubles combination, suffered a surprise 4-6, 6-4, 10-6 loss to the first-time combination of Zeballos and Roger Wassen of the Netherlands.