Hewitt through, Scud out of Open - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Hewitt through, Scud out of Open

By Darren Walton 02/09/2004 05:37:09 AM Comments (0)

Lleyton Hewitt is safely through to the second round of the US Open after ending the grand slam career of South African veteran Wayne Ferreira.

But fellow Australians Mark Philippoussis and Alicia Molik crashed out in disappointing fashion on day three of the championships at Flushing Meadows.

Hewitt, the 2001 champion and men's fourth seed this year, beat Ferreira 6-1 7-5 6-4 to book a date on Friday with either Moroccan Hicham Arazi or Kenneth Carlsen of Denmark.

Ferreira was playing in his record 56th straight grand slam before retiring at the end of the year, but was unable to repeat his two previous victories over Hewitt.

Philippoussis started promisingly against Nikolay Davydenko, establishing a two-sets-to-one lead over the Russian, but then complained of hip soreness and retired while trailing 4-1 in the fifth set.

His 1-6 6-3 3-6 7-6 (7-5) 4-1 defeat was the 11th first-round loss this year for the dual grand slam runner-up.

It means his freefall down the rankings will continue from his current standing at world No.57.

While Philippoussis's preparation had been terrible, Molik's had been superb but she was even more disappointing in her 6-4 6-3 loss to unseeded Slovak Daniela Hantuchova.

The 17th-seeded Australian was a shadow of her recent self, relinquishing service breaks in both sets to crash and burn in the second round.

Molik arrived in New York high on confidence after capturing her second career title as well as an Olympic bronze medal last month, but simply failed to perform against a player she had beaten in three of their four previous matches.

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