No. 2 seed Robredo ousted in Lyon tennis

Oct 22, 2007 - 8:37 PM LYON, France (Ticker) -- Spain's Tommy Robredo suffered another early exit, getting upset in the first round of the 965,000 Grand Prix de Tennis de Lyon on Monday.

The second-seeded Robredo fell to France's Marc Gicquel, 6-4, 7-6 (7-5), to continue a disappointing stretch where he has lost his opening match in four of his last eight tournaments.

Last week, the 25-year-old was ousted in the second round of the Masters Series event in Madrid following a first-round bye.

Gicquel avenged a loss to Robredo in New Haven in August and will face either France's Arnaud Clement or Germany's Benjamin Becker in the second round.

Ranked 79th in the world, Gicquel improved his match record this year to 18-22. His best result was a semifinal showing at the Grand Prix Hassan - a claycourt event - in April.

In recent years, Robredo has struggled in Lyon, failing to make it past the second round in his previous two appearances here.

American Andy Roddick returns from a one-month layoff this week as the top seed in the tournament.

Roddick has been sidelined for the last four weeks with a knee injury, which forced him to withdraw from last week's event in Madrid.

The 25-year-old American has not played in an ATP event since losing to world No. 1 Roger Federer in the quarterfinals at the U.S. Open. He represented the United States two weeks later at the Davis Cup, posting a pair of wins in the Americans' semifinal victory over Sweden.

Roddick captured one of his 23 career titles at this event in 2005. However, he has not returned to Lyon's indoor carpets since his straight-sets victory over Gael Monfils in the 2005 final.

Pitted against Roddick in a later first-round match is local favorite Fabrice Santoro, who has lost his last four matches and is winless since a quarterfinal victory at Mumbai in mid-September.

The world's fifth-ranked player, Roddick last played Santoro here in 2005, rolling to a straight-sets win over the Frenchman in the semifinals.

Also hoping to rebound from a second-round loss at Madrid is third-seeded Tommy Haas, who has not played here since 2000. The German, ranked 10th in the world, reached the final of this tournament in consecutive years in 1997 and 1998.

France's Richard Gasquet is seeded fourth, followed by Ivan Ljubicic of Croatia and Frenchman Gilles Simon.

The other seed to fall Monday was No. 7 Nicolas Almagro of Spain, who fell to American Mardy Fish, 2-6, 6-3, 7-6 (7-4).

In Monday's other matches, France's Jo-Wilfried Tsonga defeated American Vincent Spadea, 6-3, 6-4, and Julien Benneteau ousted fellow Frenchmen Edouard Roger-Vasselin, 5-7, 6-3, 6-1.

First prize is $136,000.






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