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UPDATED: 08:41, September 29, 2004
Philippoussis upset in Shanghai Heineken Open first round
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Australian big hitter Mark Philippoussis was outfired by American Glenn Weiner 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 in the first round of Shanghai Heineken Open tennis tournament on September 28.

The titleholder Philippoussis, who hit 10 aces compared to Weiner's 17, just could not find what was going wrong with him.

"I wasn't hitting the ball well and not serving well and I pretty much beat myself out there," said the disconsolate Philippoussis. "I was not doing anything specific and I just hurt myself."

However, by the same token Weiner, ranked 128, was able to hang in long enough to score what he referred to as one of the best victories in his career.

He said he could tell that Philippoussis had not been able to prepare as well as expected because of the injury and that he was getting frustrated.

"I think he got frustrated when he wasn't able to break me in the second set and didn't get his chances, and after I broke him my confidence had to go up, and I had to try and maintain that,"

said Weiner. "For sure it's one of the best wins for me. I played him in Hong Kong about ten years ago and he kicked my butt. He is always a threat he's a big name, so I am extra happy with this win."

Philippoussis said one of the reasons he was not able to work out as much as he would have liked in the last couple of weeks was because he was "stuck in the house in Florida because of hurricanes". He was in the path of Hurricane Frances - there was no damage to his house but a few fences and tennis fences were damaged.

Zhu Benqiang of China made his first real mark on the ATP tour 12 months ago when he and Shao Xuanzeng made the doubles final of the Heineken Open. They were the first Chinese men to reach the final of a tour level event.

Now, Zhu has scored a first round singles win at the Xian Xia Tennis Center. He came back from 1-6 down to beat Czech player Tomas Zib 6-4, 6-4 in the second and third sets. It is a very important win for the Chinese player ecause it is the first time he has made a breakthrough in singles.

And for him it is the right time because the Heineken Open has been played for six years.

"Last year we make big achievement in the doubles," said Zhu.

"That (doubles final) gave us confidence and make us feel that we have chance to defeat all opponents," said Zhu. "We are more stronger in doubles then singles because we have prepared longer in doubles. I think it was not so much tactics but it was important with the mind. It was a psychological win. Like in Davis Cup in Nanjing, we played better and better. The strong mind helps me."

Zhu said the performances of the Chinese women players in 2004 which included the Olympic doubles gold medal "encouraged us to play more hard".

The poor day of the Czechs continued when Jan Vacek was beaten by Dutch qualifier Melle van Gemerden 6-4, 6-4. Chinese player Shao Xuanzeng was beaten by Lars Burgsmuller 6-3, 6-4, Kristian Pless stormed home against Christophe Rochus 6-4, 7-5, 6-0 and Edouard Roger-Vasselin rallied back to beat Aussie Nathan Healey 4-6, 7-6, 6-3.

In doubles play, Zeng and Zhu were beaten by Jan Hernych and Davide Sanguinetti 6-4, 3-6, 6-2.

Source: Xinhua

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