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Wu's historic moment ends in defeat

(Shanghai Daily)

09:05, January 16, 2013

China's Wu Di, making a historic men's grand slam debut at the Australian Open yesterday, serves to Ivan Dodig of Croatia. Wu's adventure lasted just over three hours with a first-round exit.
(Shanghai Daily)

A motivational text message from Li Na was unable to inspire a fairytale debut from Wu Di at the Australian Open yesterday as he was beaten by Ivan Dodig in the first appearance at a major by a Chinese man.

The 21-year-old world No. 186, who qualified via a wildcard tournament in Nanjing, fought back from a set down before the experienced Croatian prevailed 7-5, 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 in 3 hours 14 minutes at Melbourne Park.

It was an unusual setting for a historic moment with Wu and Dodig playing on Court 8 in front of only about 100 spectators.

"I was asked the question about being nervous so many times and the answer was always the same - I was not nervous," Wu said.

"But I was asked so many times, it made me nervous."

Wu saved two match points before a mistimed forehand gave Dodig the victory.

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