Tennis-French/Wimbledon double still the ultimate challenge
LONDON, June 28 A lot has changed since tennis turned professional in 1968, from the colour of the balls to players’ hairstyles and advances in racket and string technology.
BARCELONA, April 23 Four-time finalist David Ferrer crashed out in the second round of the Barcelona Open on Wednesday, producing a rusty performance to lose 6-4 6-2 to Georgia's Teymuraz Gabashvili.
The world number five, who beat fellow Spaniard Rafa Nadal en route to the semi-finals of the Monte Carlo Masters last week, was a long way from his best against a player 50 players below him on the ATP rankings.
Gabashvili made precious few mistakes, breaking the second seed four times on his way to victory.
"This was one of my best victories, no in fact it is my best ever, beating David Ferrer," the Russian told reporters.
"I went into the game knowing that I had to be steady and controlled which is what I managed to do."
Gabashvili raced into a 3-0 lead in the first set but it appeared as though Ferrer was back on track when he levelled at 3-3. Ferrer, continued to make unforced errors though, and once he went a set behind he looked dispirited.
Third seed Fabio Fognini from Italy also bowed out with a whimper, trailing 6-0 4-0 to Colombian Santiago Giraldo when he retired from the second round match.
Nadal has dominated the Barcelona Open in recent years having won eight out of the last nine tournaments.
He is in action against fellow Spaniard Albert Ramos in the second round on Wednesday. (Editing by Martyn Herman)
EASTBOURNE, England, June 27 Novak Djokovic's Wimbledon preparations were left drenched and flapping in England's south coast wind on Tuesday as Eastbourne's Aegon International was scrapped for the day with no matches completed due to rain.
June 27 Briton Jamie Murray believes his doubles victory at Queen's with Brazilian Bruno Soares has given the pair a much-needed boost ahead of next week's Wimbledon as the duo target their third grand slam title.