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Davydenko Beats Zib in Poertschach Tennis

May 23, 2006

POERTSCHACH, Austria (AP) _ Top-seeded Nikolay Davydenko beat Tomas Zib of the Czech Republic 6-3, 6-0 in the Hypo Group International on Tuesday.

The sixth-ranked Davydenko has been playing well leading up to the French Open, where he reached the semifinals last year. The Russian reached the final in Estoril, the third round in Rome, and quarterfinals in Hamburg.

Fourth-seeded Dmitry Tursunov lost to Juan Monaco of Argentina 7-6 (4), 6-2, leaving Davydenko as the only one of the top four seeds to make it past the first round.

Seventh-seeded Luis Horna of Peru defeated Wesley Moodie of South Africa 7-6 (3), 6-3 to end a three-match losing streak. Horna won his first career title at Acapulco in March but he’s reached only two quarterfinals or better in 13 tournaments this year.

Eighth-seeded Gilles Simon of France put away qualifier Thorsten Popp of Germany 7-5, 6-4 in his first match as a top-50 player. Simon started the year ranked 124th and reached a career-high 48th on Monday thanks to a 12-4 run on European clay.

Andreas Seppi of Italy beat Lukas Dlouhy of the Czech Republic 6-3, 6-4, and local wild card Oliver Marach downed Vince Spadea of the United States 6-4, 6-3.

Marach, a 25-year-old Austrian, planned to play in qualifying matches for the French Open in Paris this week, but got into the main draw after others pulled out. The 97th-ranked Marach then received a wild card for Poertschach and dominated No. 71-ranked Spadea with his strong serve.

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