Top seeded Henman loses to Ivan Ljubicic

Updated: 25 February 2007 09:08 IST

Top seed Tim Henman lost 6-4 4-6 6-2 to big-serving Croatian Ivan Ljubicic in the third round of the $3 million Madrid Masters on Thursday.

Top seeded Henman loses to Ivan Ljubicic

Madrid:

Top seed Tim Henman lost 6-4 4-6 6-2 to big-serving Croatian Ivan Ljubicic in the third round of the $3 million Madrid Masters on Thursday. Henman lost the opening set but looked to have regained the upper hand when he took the second to force a decider. But the British number one committed too many unforced errors as Ljubicic advanced to the quarter-finals. In other round three matches, USA's Taylor Dent beat Germany's Tommy Haas, 7-6 6-2 while Spain's Tommy Robredo, suffering from a sore shoulder, rallied to defeat countryman Fernando Verdasco, 2-6 6-4 6-3. With the top three players in the world - Roger Federer, Andy Roddick and Lleyton Hewitt all missing, top seed Tim Henman was looking to take full advantage. In his way though to the third round was the big-serving Croatian Ivan Ljubicic. Fast startLjubicic got off to a fast start and while Henman held his own to begin with his inconsistency and unforced error rate soon started to cause him problems. In the first set, each had three aces and Henman had more winners, 15-9. But Henman committed 17 unforced errors to Ljubicic's four, struggling to hold service games he had seemed to wrap up. That caught up with him in the deciding 10th game. He saved the first break point, but gave game and set to Ljubicic by drifting out of position to midcourt where he was handcuffed by a rocket of a forehand. In the second set, the Briton seemed to find his stride when he took the second to force a decider. But in the deciding set, Ljubicic upped his own game and Henman fell apart - the inconsistency of the baseline play handing the game to Ljubicic. Dent beats Haas Earlier the USA's Taylor Dent looked impressive dispatching Tommy Haas in two sets. The first was forced into a tie-break and Dent's improved game at the net gave him the set. In the second set the Haas's resistance crumbled and Dent cruised to a quarter-final berth. 7-6, 6-2. Eighth seed Tommy Robredo started badly against Fernando Verdasco, losing his serve in the first and last games of the opening set. His chances didn't look good when he removed his shirt and a trainer massaged his serving shoulder during a changeover. The turnaround came in the second set when he broke Verdasco for the first time with a crushing forehand winner. He broke Verdasco in game three and in the final game failed to convert three match points, but took the fourth for a 2-6 6-4 6-3 victory. (AP)



Topics : Tennis
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