Chela, Norman advance at Energis Open


AMERSFOORT, Netherlands, AP

Second-seeded Juan-Ignacio Chela of Argentina broke a four-match losing streak to oust Swede Andreas Vinciguerra 6-2, 6-4 at the US$381,000 Energis Open.

Wild card Magnus Norman of Sweden had an easy passage after a groin injury forced Swiss Marc Rosset to retire from their first round game at 3-2 and a break down in the first set.

Norman will meet fifth-seeded Jarkko Nieminen of Finland, who eased through with a 7-5, 6-1 victory over Georgia’s Irakli Labadze.

But there were two seeded casualties.

Sixth-seeded Fernando Gonzalez of Chile was eliminated in straight sets by Spaniard Juan Balcells 7-6 (3), 6-3 and Belgian No. 8 Olivier Rochus fell to Andre Sa of Brazil 6-4, 6-2.

Rochus’ elder brother Christophe was more successful, dropping just three games against Ivo Heuberger of Switzerland, 6-3, 6-0, and Argentine Jose Acasuso ousted Michael Russell of the United States 6- , 6-3.

Alex Corretja of Spain, a winner last week at Gstaad, starts the defense of his title at this clay court ATP event Tuesday against Alexandre Simoni of Brazil. Nalbandian loses in opening round of Croatia Open Top-seeded David Nalbandian of Argentina tumbled out of the opening round of the US$381,000 ATP Croatia Open losing to qualifier David Ferrer of Spain 6-4, 6-3.

In a game played under lightly sprinkling rain, both players struggled with their serves, with four of the six opening games going against the server.

Nalbandian, a surprise finalist at Wimbledon this year, was down 5-4 in the first set and serving to stay in the match but Ferrer converted his fourth break point to clinch the set.

The 20-year-old Argentine looked to have regained composure at the beginning of the second set, going up 2-1. But Ferrer, a clay court specialist and semifinalist here last season, rallied to win five of the next six games to win the match.

Also, Croatia’s Mario Radic made short work of Austrian Julian Knowle, winning 6-4, 6-3, while Oliver Gross of Germany came from behind to overcome another Austrian, Markus Hipfl, 3-6, 7-6 (8), 7-6 (5). Rain delays play as Pavel beats Hrbaty Fifth-seeded Andrei Pavel outlasted Dominik Hrbaty in three sets as the Mercedes Cup got off to a late and wet start. Pavel, a Romanian who was a quarterfinalist at the French Open, won his first career match against Hrbaty, winning 6-3, 1-6, 6-3. The Slovak had beaten Pavel twice previously, indoors and on a hard court surface.

Felix Mantilla of Spain dismissed Germany’s Jens Knippschild 6-3, 6-1. The German was stung by a bee just before the match.

Another Romania, Adrian Voinea, defeated Anthony Dupuis of France, 6-4, 6-2.

In an all-German showdown, Lars Burgsmueller edged Bjoern Phau 7-6 (4), 6-4.

Two matches were washed out because of the delay and will be played Tuesday — No. 6 Nicolas Lapentti against Andrea Gaudenzi and Hicham Arazi against Mikhail Youzhny.