Scud justifies wildcard with win - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Scud justifies wildcard with win

28/06/2006 03:37:58 AM Comments (0)

Australia's Mark Philippoussis justified his Wimbledon wildcard with a hard-fought first-round victory over No.32 seed Paul-Henri Mathieu of France.

Philippoussis, ranked 210th, beat world No.35 Mathieu 5-7 7-6 (7-5) 6-3 7-6 (14-12) to set up a second-round meeting with either Max Mirnyi of Belarus or Spain's Ruben Ramirez-Hidalgo.

It wasn't until the final game of the opening set that the first break of serve came in the match, allowing Mathieu to take the early advantage.

In the second set tiebreak Philippoussis broke Mathieu when the Frenchman sent a forehand long to go 3-2 up, but Philippoussis surrendered the mini-break on the next point with a double fault.

He broke Mathieu again two points later before a netted volley left the scores at 5-5.

Edging ahead with an ace, Philippoussis won the following point on Mathieu's serve to take the tiebreak 7-5 and level the match at one set all.

The Australian made a decisive break in the sixth game of the third set paving the way for a two sets to one lead but made hard going of the fourth set tiebreak, finally converting his sixth match point to win in three hours and 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, Alicia Molik breezed into the second round with a straight-sets win over Taiwanese qualifier Yung-Jan Chan 7-5 6-1.

Molik, the former world No.8 now ranked 260 after a long-term inner-ear problem, will next play the winner of the match between No.21 seed Katarina Srebotnik and Martina Sucha.

Wayne Arthurs was troubled by a back injury and lost his first-round match to fellow veteran Fabrice Santoro of France, 7-6 (7-3) 6-3 3-6 6-1.

Lleyton Hewitt's scheduled first-round match against Italy's Filippo Volandri was postponed until day three of the Championships as organisers played program catch-up after rain allowed less than an hour's play on Monday.

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