Swedish players prevailed in Tuesday’s two closest men’s singles first round matches as the 13th Sardinia Open, part of the NEC Wheelchair Tennis Tour, got underway in Alghero with the seeded players all progressing with ease.
Niclas Rodhborn earned a second round match against French seventh seed Lahcen Majdi after edging out Austria’s Joseph Riegler 63 46 64, while fellow Swede Joakim Larsson defeated Switzerland’s Thomas von Daeniken 63 76(5) to set up a contest against fifth seed Tadeusz Kruszelnicki, one of two Polish players that will contest the last at the popular ITF 2 Series tournament.
Morocco’s Ahmed Jeddi won the day’s only other three set match when he overcame Marco Amdori 63 57 61 to book a place in the second round against eighth seed Laszlo Farkas of Hungary.
On an otherwise tough day for the home Italian players, sixth seed Fabian Mazzei and Ivan Lion both won through in a section of the draw that guaranteed that there will be an Italian quarterfinalist after they beat their fellow countrymen Paolo Tontodonati and Alberto Corradi. Mazzei will start favourite to reach the last eight and a possible quarterfinal against French second seed Frederic Cattaneo.
Cattaneo still has a second round match against the Czech Republic’s Miroslav Brychta to come, but the Frenchman was one of three seeded players, along with top seed Joachim Gerard of Belgium and Australian fourth seed Ben Weekes, to begin the tournament with 60 60 victories.
An Italian semifinalist is also guaranteed in the women’s singles after Silvia de Maria won through one of the three first round matches in the women’s singles. De Maria beat Denmark’s Luise Willerslev-Olsen 62 60 to earn a quarterfinal against third seed Marianna Lauro, one of five players to have first round byes.
Top seed and defending champion Sabine Ellerbrock of Germany will begin her challenge against an Italian player after Monica Quuassinti beat her compatriot Denise Boldi 60 61, while Switzerland’s Gabriela Buehler beat Malene Olesen of Denmark to set up a quarterfinal against Dutch second seed Sharon Walraven.
Sardnia Open Draws, Results and Order of Play