Monday, 25 October 2010
Monday preview - St Petersburg
The 16th edition of the St. Petersburg Open is led by top seed and 2004 champion Mikhail Youzhny, one of a tournament-high six Russians in the main draw (not including qualifiers). Youzhny, the last Russian to win the St. Petersburg title, is battling for one of the three remaining positions for the year-ending Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in London.
The defending champion is No. 2 Sergiy Stakhovsky of Ukraine. Last year Stakhovsky was a qualifier, defeating Argentine Horacio Zeballos in a third set tie-break. Other seeds are: No. 3 Janko Tipsarevic of Serbia, No. 4 Yen-Hsun Lu of Chinese Taipei, No. 5 Viktor Troicki of Serbia who captured his first ATP World Tour title in Moscow on Sunday. No. 6 Denis Istomin of Uzbekistan, No. 7 Jeremy Chardy of France and No. 8 Victor Hanescu of Romania round out the seeds.
On Monday’s schedule, there are four singles qualifying matches, three involving Russians, and three main draw singles matches.
In the first main draw match on Centre Court, Chardy and Mikhail Kukushkin of Kazakhstan meet in the first round for the second straight week. Last week in Moscow, Kukushkin won 6-2, 6-4.
The next match features Italian Filippo Volandri and Russian Teymuraz Gabashvili. Volandri won the previous meeting on the ATP World Tour in Rome in 2007 and in two other Italian Challengers, all on clay.
In the final match, wild card Igor Andreev looks to even his record (0-1) against American Michael Russell, who won the previous meeting in March this year at ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Indian Wells.