06-04-2005, 11:50 PM
Not sure if this has been posted already but...

From Sky Sports, 2 June:

British number two Greg Rusedski crashed out in the first round of the Surbiton Open on Thursday, going down 7-6 7-6 to unheralded Italian Daniele Bracciali.
The defeat continues the poor run of the 31-year-old, who has reached the second round of an event just twice in 2005.

However, the Canadian-born world number 39 refused to be downhearted by the narrow loss, saying: "I'm quite happy with the way it went. Everybody could see how well he played and it was a useful work-out for me.

"I've had some tough draws lately in tournaments but maybe I'll get a bit more luck next week at Queen's and then Stoke Park and Wimbledon."

Unsurprisingly he was installed as top seed at Surbiton but like the other British players who view the grass as their brief chance each year to impart some damage on superior talents, he did not find it quite so attractive after it had been left out uncovered in the rain.

Only 30 minutes play had been possible in a handful of other matches the previous day and Rusedski admitted: "They were terrible conditions out there but I'm not going to blame the courts.

"I have just run into a player who played so well and handled them extremely well. You all saw the way he served. He tossed the ball an inch above his head and hit it hard.

"He was fantastic but the big question is can he do that match-in, match-out?"

Rusedski would have gone up against fellow Briton Jamie Delgado, who scored a fine 6-3 6-4 win over experienced Brazilian Andre Sa.

But then Delgado went out, also in straight sets, to Bracciali, joining first round losers Jonathan Marray and Alan Mackin