Third seed Schuettler crashes out in first round

American Vincent Spadea knocks out third seed Rainer Schuettler of Germany in the first round of Italia Masters.

updated: February 25, 2007 10:06 IST
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American Vincent Spadea caused the first shock of the Italia Masters in Rome when he knocked out third seed Rainer Schuettler of Germany with a 6-2, 2-6, 7-5 victory in the first round on Monday. The top other seeds in action on the opening day all enjoyed straight sets victories. Schuettler, who has had a poor year but seemed to be back on form with wins over Lleyton Hewitt and Carlos Moya en route to the Monte Carlo Masters final, faced Vince Spadea of the United States in the first round of the Italia Masters. Spadea, who is having one of the best seasons of his career, including his first career title at Scottsdale in Arizona and a semi-final appearance at the Nasdaq-100 Open in Miami, won the opening set 6-2. The German third seed bounced back to level the match by taking the second set by the same score. Schuettler saved a match point as he battled back from 5-2 down in the third set to draw level at 5-5. But he surrendered his serve once more and then Spadea served out for a two sets to one victory, 6-2, 2-6, 7-5. Fifth seeded David Nalbandian of Argentina advanced to the second round after a straight forward victory over Sweden's Robin Soderling, winning 6-4, 6-4. Britain's fourth seed Tim Henman, who is more at home on fast grass courts than Rome's slow clay, overcame a shaky start to brush aside German qualifier Florian Mayer 7-5, 6-1. Henman has never progressed beyond the third round in Rome. The sixth seed Carlos Moya also advanced to the next round as he never lost his serve in his 6-4, 6-2 win against fellow Spanish clay-courter Alberto Martin. The 2001 Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic, who has no love of clay, was swept aside 6-2, 6-4 by Radek Stepanek of the Czech Republic. He next faces Henman. Thailand's Paradorn Srichaphan, who's seeded tenth, had to overcome a second set loss to defeat Alessio Di Mauro of Italy 7-6 (7-3), 3-6, 6-3. Big serving Ivo Karlovic of Croatia, who burst onto the world scene by beating Lleyton Hewitt in the first round at Wimbledon last year, beat Germany's Tommy Haas in a final set tiebreak, winning 7-5, 4-6, 7-6, (7-5). (AP)