Davydenko beats Wawrinka in first round of Basel

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Nikolay Davydenko  rolled back the years with an excellent performance to defeat Stanislas Wawrinka in straight sets 7-6 (7) 7-6 (3). The Russian started slowly, dropping serve in his first service game, but would later show some of the form that saw him a constant in the top 10 in years go by.

Davydenko would win four games in a row from 0-2 but would not be able to hold on for the rest of the set, handing back his serve in game eight of the set. He would have multiple opportunities to break for the opportunity to serve out the set but Wawrinka would get the better of a four deuce game that saw two break points go begging. Neither player had much success for the rest of the set so a tie breaker would be needed. Wawrinka blew an early mini-break lead but twice saved set points including one on the Davydenko serve at 6-7*. The third one would be taken with a clean winner from the Russia to take the tie break 9-7.

Wawrinka would threaten the Davydenko serve once more to begin the second set but would fail to convert two break points and again in game seven where three more came and went. Other than that, there would be very little danger to either player’s serve in the set so another tie break would be needed.

Again the Swiss would take an early mini break but Davydenko once more fought back. Four straight points put him in a commanding position at 4-1. Wawrinka took both service points to stay close but Davydenko would fail to be moved, holding his for three set points. The first one would be taken as Davydenko moves on to the next round, where he will play either Henri Laaksonen or Paul-Henri Mathieu.

Thomaz Bellucci came from a set and break down to earn a second round clash with Federer after he defeated Go Soeda 4-6 6-4 6-3. The Moscow finalist definitely looked to be suffering a hangover as he lost the first set, Soeda needing just a single break to take it although both players threatened breaks.

An early break in set two looked to have sealed it for Soeda, but he couldn’t hold on. From 4-2, the Japanese lost four games in a row and with it the set. The momentum carried on to the decider with Bellucci winning another five games in a row to put the match out of reach. Soeda threatened a comeback, taking three games in a row but Bellucci would hold his nerve next time round, serving out to love.

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