• Ljubicic ousts Seppi in Eastbourne opener

    6/14/09 9:57 PM | Ricky Dimon
    Ljubicic ousts Seppi in Eastbourne opener Ivan Ljubicic kicks off the AEGON International with a straight-set win over Andreas Seppi on Sunday afternoon. Ljubicic now awaits either Joshua Goodall or Tatsuma Ito.

    Ivan Ljubicic got off to winning start in his final Wimbledon tune-up at the AEGON International on Sunday afternoon. Ljubicic, who advanced one round last week at Queen's Club before losing to James Blake, knocked out Andreas Seppi 7-6(4), 7-5.

    Little separated the two players throughout their Eastbourne opener, especially in the first set. Neither man could break serve, although Seppi had to save four break points and Ljubicic survived three on the way to a tiebreaker. The 6'4'' Croat took the decider without much difficulty to earn a one-set advantage.

    Seppi, however, was quick to regain the momentum. The seventh-seeded Italian went up an early break in the second set, but he gave it back with a poor service effort at 4-2. From there it was almost all Ljubicic. The unseeded 30-year-old broke again at 5-5 and promptly served out the match in routine fashion.

    Ljubicic, a far more accomplished grass-court player than his counter-punching opponent, finished with nine aces and two double-faults. Seppi stuck only two aces against three doubles. Ljubicic needed one hour and 33 minutes to set up a second-round meeting with either wildcard Joshua Goodall or qualifier Tatsuma Ito.

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