Ljubicic ousted at Open de Moselle
Originally published on: 26/02/10 12:03
With Ljubicic, the 2005 champion, eliminated the only past winner remaining in the Metz field is French wild card Arnaud Clement, who won the inaugural tournament five years ago.
The 27-year-old Hanescu, who won his first title earlier this year at Gstaad, will face Eduardo Schwank next.
Schwank posted the surprise of the day with a 7-6 (7/5) 6-2 ousted of third-seeded Spaniard Nicolas Almagro.
French second seed Gilles Simon was also a notable first-round casualty as he lost to countryman Nicolas Mahut 6-4 3-6 6-1.
After the match was evenly poised at 1-1 in the third set, Mahut won the final five games to seal the victory.
It was an unexpected exit for Simon, who ranked 12th in the world, and who won in Bucharest in his previous tournament earlier this month.
Top-seeded Ivo Karlovic also was in danger of being upset, but he earned safe passage into the second round when Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis retired from their match with a back injury.
Baghdatis, who won his only prior meeting with the Croat, was leading 6-4 1-2 when he conceded. The ATP leader with 830 aces, Karlovic will next face former world number one Carlos Moya, who owns a 3-0 lead in their all-time series.
Number four seed Paul-Henri Mathieu won the day’s other all-French showdown, thumping Nicolas Devilder 6-0 6-2 in 61 minutes. Fifth-seeded Russian Dmitry Tursunov, seeking his first title since Sydney in January, downed French qualifier Thierry Ascione 6-7 (3/7) 6-2 6-4.