Hewitt handed tough draw for US Open - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Hewitt handed tough draw for US Open

25/08/2005 06:17:03 AM Comments (0)

Lleyton Hewitt has been dealt a difficult draw for next week's US Open, with Swiss master Roger Federer and Russian powerhouse Marat Safin both set to stand in his path to the final.

The South Australian opens his campaign in New York against 2002 French Open champion Albert Costa with Hewitt holding a 5-1 head-to-head advantage over the Spaniard.

Third seeded Hewitt, who won the US Open title in 2001, faces a potential third round fixture with big-serving Taylor Dent and fourth round clash with compatriot Mark Philippoussis who hasn't won a tour match since Wimbledon.

If the fiery baseliner negotiates his way to the quarter-finals, he faces a possible date with Safin and then a meeting with world No.1 Federer in the final four.

Hewitt began the year in style, reaching the Australian Open final for the first time before losing in four sets to Safin.

Injury and illness caused him to skip the claycourt season, but he showed plenty of form by reaching the semi-finals at Wimbledon, losing to the eventual champion in Swiss magician Federer.

In Cincinnati last week, he improved with every match before he lost in the semi-finals to American Andy Roddick.

Meanwhile Philippoussis plays Slovakian Karol Kucera in the opening round and Wayne Arthurs tackles Davide Sanguinetti after the draw was made at the United Nations early Thursday morning Australian time.

In the women's draw, 14th seeded Australian Alicia Molik takes on American Shenay Perry in the first round, Nicole Pratt meets Japan's Akiko Morigami.

Sam Stosur will play a qualifier first up.

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