Nadal bounces back to win; Murray, Tsonga also advance at Wimbledon
WIMBLEDON, England (AP) - Rafael Nadal lost the first four games of his first-round match at Wimbledon before turning things around against Thomaz Bellucci, beating the Brazilian 7-6 (0), 6-2, 6-3.
Just like defending women's champion Petra Kvitova in the match before him, Nadal had a shaky start Tuesday on Centre Court. He was two points away from going down 5-0 in the first set, but Bellucci netted an overhead backhand at 30-15 and Nadal went on to break for 4-1 to start the comeback. He won the next three games to make it 4-4 and Bellucci then self-destructed in the tiebreaker, making several unforced errors.
The two-time champion was hardly troubled after that and served out the match with an ace.
In other men's action, Andy Murray cruised into the second round of Wimbledon on Tuesday by brushing aside Nikolay Davydenko 6-1, 6-1, 6-4.
On a day when Petra Kvitova and Rafael Nadal both had poor starts before recovering for victories on Centre Court, Murray took control from the start and never looked back against the former third-ranked Russian. Murray broke Davydenko six times and never dropped his own serve.
As always, Murray is facing high expectations from the home crowd that he can become the first British man to win Wimbledon since Fred Perry in 1936.
Davydenko lost in the first round for the second year in a row.
Fifth-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga ousted former champion Lleyton Hewitt in straight sets to reach the second round.
Hewitt was playing as a wild card for the first time at Wimbledon and couldn't stop the sixth-ranked Frenchman, who broke once in each set to win 6-3, 6-4, 6-4. Tsonga finished with 61 winners to the Australian's 12.
Tsonga reached the semifinals at the All England Club last year after rallying from two sets down against Roger Federer in the quarterfinals, before losing to eventual champion Novak Djokovic. Tsonga lost to Djokovic again at the French Open this year after holding four match points in their quarterfinal.
Hewitt was playing in his 14th straight Wimbledon. He had not lost in the first round since 2003, when he was the defending champion.
Playing his first match since having a medical procedure on his heart, Mardy Fish of the United States hit 24 aces and beat Ruben Ramirez-Hidalgo of Spain 7-6 (3), 7-5, 7-6 (1) to reach the second round.
Afterward, Fish canceled his news conference, because "he's not feeling well,'' ATP spokesman Nicola Arzani said.
The 30-year-old Fish hadn't played a competitive match in 2 1/2 months, taking time off because of an accelerated heartbeat.
Hours after losing a match at Key Biscayne, Fla., on March 29, Fish went to be checked by doctors after his heart started racing at night, and he pulled out of the U.S. Davis Cup team's quarterfinal against France the following week.
In May, doctors induced extreme palpitations to try to pinpoint the problem.
Fish reached the quarterfinals at Wimbledon last year, his best showing at the grass-court tournament.
Against Ramirez-Hidalgo - at 34, the oldest man in the field - Fish played his usual brand of attacking, serve-and-volley tennis. His serves topped 130 mph and he wound up with 61 winners, 43 more than Ramirez-Hidalgo.