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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Schuettler shoved aside by Sela

Photo Titled Schuettler stretch
Schuettler stretch
There will be no repeat of last year's dramatic charge to the semi-finals by Rainer Scheuttler after the German bowed out in disappointing fashion in the second round to unseeded Dudi Sela.

Early on, Schuettler looked like he could go on to repeat his 2008 exploits - which were ended only by eventual champion Rafael Nadal - as he streaked into a 5-2 lead in the first set. But his resilient Israeli opponent fought hard to turn the set around and built on that momentum to win the match in straight sets 7-6 (7-3), 6-3, 6-2.

This may be only his second year playing at Wimbledon but Sela looked very much at home, producing an exciting array of shots that the 33-year-old Schuettler struggled to contend with.

However, it was only after a succession of double faults by the German veteran that Sela first managed to gain a foothold in the match and the chance to reverse that early 5-2 scoreline.

A delicate exchange at the net resulted in Sela’s first break of the opening set and signalled the start of a resurgence.

The resulting tie-break was dominated by Sela, who was looking to complete a hat-trick of wins over the German player.

Having battled hard to strike the first blow of the match, Sela soon found an impressive level of consistency, led by a fierce backhand that gave him the confidence to display some of the more subtle shots in his repertoire.

The second set saw the Israeli unleash an effective series of drop shots. After beating Schuettler twice in quick succession using that tactic, Sela did not hesitate to repeat the trick again and again.

Sela's growing dominance was rewarded when he broke serve to give him a 4-2 lead before going on to close out the set.

Having built such a commanding position, Sela showed no signs of nerves against a more celebrated opponent and was ruthless throughout the third to clinch the match.

Schuettler will be disappointed not to have progressed further in this year’s Championships after last year’s wonderful run but the German can have no complaints given the convincing manner in which he was defeated.

Court 12 - Gentlemen's Singles - 2nd Round
Dudi Sela ISR Winner7766
Rainer Schuettler GER (18)6332

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