• Kunitsyn upsets Andreev on Day 1 in Memphis

    2/17/09 4:06 AM | Ricky Dimon
    Kunitsyn upsets Andreev on Day 1 in Memphis Igor Kunitsyn takes out Igor Andreev in the first round of the RMK Championships on Monday. Kunitsyn is joined in the second round by Chris Guccione and Dudi Sela.

    Igor Kunitsyn d. Igor Andreev 1-6, 6-4, 6-3

    Kunitsyn went into Memphis with an 0-4 match record in 2009, and he played like it in the opening set. The No. 43 player in the world lost seven of his eight second-serve points in the first and got broken twice. 87-percent serving by Andreev did not help Kunitsyn's chances of ever getting back in the set. Shockingly, however, the slumping Kunitsyn stormed back to upset his sixth-seeded opponent. Kunitsyn's first break of the afternoon came with Andreev serving to stay in the second set at 4-5. After that, the underdog took complete control of the match throughout the final set. His serve improved dramatically and he jumped all over Andreev's second deliveries, winning nine of 13 second-serve points. The third frame of play was also decided by just one break, but there was little doubt about the eventual outcome. Kunitsyn will meet either Jarkko Nieminen or Philipp Petzschner for a spot in the quarterfinals.

    Chris Guccione d. Vincent Spadea 7-6(1), 7-6(5)

    Not too surprisingly, there was not a single break of serve in this first-round encounter. Guccione, however, was to tough in the tiebreaker and therefore advanced in straight sets. But Spadea had most of the chances in the first set prior to the tiebreaker. Despite losing the 'breaker seven points to won, Spadea still finished with the same amount of points won (35) as Guccione in the opening frame of play. That's because the American lost just two points in six service games. He also got a look at two break points--which were set points with Guccione serving at 5-6--but failed to convert either one. After Guccione dominated the tiebreak, both players had one break point in set two; neither converted. The 6'7'' Aussie got down 5-2 in the second-set 'breaker, but he stormed back to win the last five points of the match, closing out the proceedings with his 19th ace. Guccione won an incredible 49 of 51 first-serve points en route to the second round, where he will take on either James Blake or Lleyton Hewitt.

    Dudi Sela d. Bobby Reynolds 7-6(4), 6-2

    This was far from your typical indoor hard-court match. Thanks to some dismal serving, the first set featured a total of six service breaks en route to the tiebreaker. Both Sela and Reynolds served at just over for 50 percent while tossing in four double-faults apiece. Neither man could find any sort of footing in the match, but the 5'9'' Israeli eventually too control in the 'breaker and took it seven points to four. Sela never looked back after that. Although he continued to serve at a dismal rate, he saved two break points in the second and was able to take care of all four of his service games. Reynolds' serve never improved and he surrendered it twice more while winning less than 40 percent of his second-serve points. Next up for Sela is either Robin Soderling or Florent Serra.

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