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The Star Online: Sports

Mayer beats Youzhny at Monte Carlo Masters

Posted: 11 Apr 2011 05:52 AM PDT

MONACO (AP): Florian Mayer of Germany beat 10th-seeded Mikhail Youzhny of Russia 6-3, 2-6, 6-3 in the first round of the Monte Carlo Masters on Monday.

The error-strewn match saw numerous double faults and 13 breaks of serve, with Mayer breaking Youzhny seven times.

Mayer faces either Frederico Gil of Portugal or Sergiy Stakhovsky of Ukraine in the second round.

Elsewhere, there were straight-sets wins for 11th-seeded Viktor Troicki of Serbia and Spain's Daniel Gimeno-Traver.

Troicki beat Jean-Rene Lisnard of Monaco 7-6 (4), 6-1, and Gimeno-Traver beat Colombia's Santiago Giraldo 7-6 (4), 7-5 to set up a meeting with Gael Monfils of France.

Later Monday, 12th-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France was playing Argentina's Juan Monaco.

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Gulbis beats Dolgopolov at Monte Carlo Masters

Posted: 11 Apr 2011 03:49 AM PDT

MONACO (AP): Ernests Gulbis beat 14th-seeded Alexandr Dolgopolov of Ukraine 6-1, 6-4 in the first round of the Monte Carlo Masters on Sunday.

The Latvian hit nine aces and broke Dolgopolov's serve twice in each set. He next meets Milos Raonic after the Canadian beat Michael Llodra of France 6-3, 0-6, 6-0.

Gulbis is looking to pick up his form. He reached the quarterfinals at Doha, Qatar, and the semifinals at Sydney, Australia.

But the 22-year-old Latvian has won just two matches in the last five tournaments since then.

He reached the semifinals on clay at the Rome Masters and the quarterfinals at the Madrid Masters last year.

The 20-year-old Raonic, in his first appearance at Monte Carlo, broke Llodra three times in the deciding set. Raonic had also beaten Llodra at this year's Australian Open, where he came through the qualifiers to reach the fourth round.

"It just sort of took a little bit of figuring out what to do," said Raonic. "I'm still sort of trying to find my game, what the right way to play on clay is for me. I was fortunate enough to get through that one and sort of give myself another chance to pick up more experience in a real match situation."

Llodra said he struggled due to the change in surface as well as Raonic's game.

"It was very hard for me to come back on clay because I need time to adapt and Raonic has a unique style," Llodra said. "In the second set, I decided to step back a bit to have a chance of returning his serve."

Elsewhere, there were wins for Ivan Ljubicic of Croatia and Philipp Kohlschreiber of Germany.

The big-serving Ljubicic needed little more than an hour to crush Frenchman Jeremy Chardy 6-1, 6-2, and Kohlschreiber rallied past Andrey Golubev of Kazakhstan 5-7, 7-6 (6), 6-4 to line up a match with Roger Federer, seeded second.

"With the level I played at today, I think I could have lost against many players," Chardy said.

Ljubicic next plays either No. 12 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France or Argentina's Juan Monaco.

Top-ranked Rafael Nadal, who has a bye into the second round, is aiming for his seventh straight Monte Carlo title.

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