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Tim Henman Knocked Out of AXA Cup

February 23, 2000

LONDON (AP) _ England’s Tim Henman, fresh from a runner-up finish last week in Rotterdam, was knocked out of the AXA Cup on Wednesday in a first-round loss to Argentine Mariano Zabaleta 7-6 (3), 7-5.

Henman, the No. 3 seed and a favorite in London, had three break points in the 11th game that would have given him a 6-5 lead. Instead, Zabaleta took the game and then broke Henman in the 12th game to win the match.

In the day’s other early first-round singles match, Frenchman and No. 6 seed Cedric Pioline defeated Alberto Martin of Spain 7-5, 7-6 (5).

Henman joins the second seed Nicolas Kiefer on the sideline. Kiefer was beaten Tuesday by 18-year-old Swiss Roger Federer 6-2, 6-3.

No. 1 seed Yevgeny Kafelnikov played his first-round match later Wednesday against Andrei Medvedev of Ukraine. Also on Wednesday, Jamie Delgado of Britain played Jonas Bjorkman of Sweden.

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