Stepanek advances; Chardy exits Sydney

9:02 AM, Jan 8, 2013   |    comments
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Sydney, Australia (Sports Network) - Radek Stepanek was an easy first-round winner, while Jeremy Chardy was an upset victim Tuesday at the Sydney International tennis event, a final Australian Open tune-up.

The sixth-seeded Czech Stepanek overcame three double faults by converting on all four of his break chances against Spanish qualifier Guillermo Garcia-Lopez to earn a 6-2, 6-3 decision at Sydney Olympic Park Tennis Centre.

Feliciano Lopez of Spain, meanwhile, hammered 22 aces against France's Chardy, the tournament's seventh seed, during a 6-7 (2-7), 7-5, 6-3 victory in just over two hours.

Reigning Sydney champion and 2009 runner-up Jarkko Nieminen of Finland advanced by defeating German qualifier Bjorn Phau 6-0, 6-1.

Other first-round matches saw wild card John Millman of Australia ease past Spain's Tommy Robredo 6-3, 6-4, Italian Fabio Fognini top Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov 6-3, 6-1, and Bernard Tomic of Australia defeat compatriot Marinko Matosevic 6-3, 6-4. Dimitrov reached his first-ever ATP final in Brisbane last week.

South Africa's Kevin Anderson advanced to the second round by outlasting Aljaz Bedene of Slovenia 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, and American Ryan Harrison moved on when Spain's Roberto Bautista Agut retired in the first set while trailing 2-1 with lower abdominal pain. Bautista Agut reached his first career ATP final in Chennai last week.

In some second-round action on Wednesday, top-seeded American John Isner will meet his qualifier compatriot Harrison and second-seeded Frenchman Gilles Simon will battle the veteran Nieminen. Simon titled here two years ago.

The Sports Network

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