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Federer, Roddick win in Toronto
Roger Lajoie | July 29, 2004 10:31 IST
World number one Roger Federer cruised past Hicham Arazi of Morocco 6-3, 7-5 on Wednesday to reach the second round of the $2.5 million Toronto Masters.
Second seed Andy Roddick also powered through with a 6-4, 6-2 win over Julien Benneteau. The Frenchman was treated courtside for a neck injury in the second set and was clearly too hurt to mount much of a challenge.
Several leading players went out including third seed Guillermo Coria of Argentina, who was forced to retire with a shoulder injury when trailing 5-1 to Luis Horna of Peru.
Sixth seed David Nalbandian was beaten 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 by Russian Mikhail Youzhny. The Argentine, who lost in the final here last year to American Roddick, blew a 4-1 lead in the third set.
Also eliminated were eighth-seeded German Rainer Schuettler, 11th seed Gaston Gaudio of Argentina, number 12 Sebastien Grosjean of France, 13th-seeded Chilean Nicolas Massu and number 15 Marat Safin of Russia.
Top seed Federer won the first set against Arazi on Tuesday, the only action in the whole tournament on a day ruined by persistent drizzle.
On the resumption on Wednesday, Federer broke Arazi in the 11th game of the second set before clinching victory over his opponent for the fourth time in five career meetings.
Federer, who fired 12 aces, said he was unaffected by having to carry the match over.
"I was in a good position which makes it easier," he told reporters. "I was happy to be up a set.
"We didn't have to wait long really (on Tuesday), 20 minutes, and then they cancelled us. So, for me it wasn't too bad."
The rest of the field, including 19 of the world's top 20, endured lengthy delays before their matches were postponed on Tuesday.
Roddick claimed his 17th victory in 18 matches when he breezed past the luckless Benneteau but he said he would be taking nothing for granted this week.
"The depth in the game is pretty impressive," Roddick said. "It's really, really tough these days, especially at tournaments like this, when everybody is here.
"I'm just going to try and win as many matches as I can."
Fernando Gonzalez of Chile recorded the first upset on Wednesday when he knocked out Schuettler 3-6, 6-4, 6-3.
Grosjean was eliminated by fellow Frenchman Gregory Carraz 6-2, 7-6 while Massu lost 6-4, 6-4 to Thomas Johansson of Sweden.
Safin went down 6-7, 6-4, 7-6 to German Nicolas Kiefer while Australia's Todd Reid defeated Gaudio 7-6, 5-7, 6-3.
Fourth seed Carlos Moya struggled against fellow Spaniard Fernando Verdasco before scraping through 6-7, 6-3, 6-4.
Britain's Tim Henman, the fifth seed, beat Argentina's Mariano Zabaleta 6-4, 6-1 while ninth seed Lleyton Hewitt of Australia rallied to put out Rafael Nadal of Spain 1-6, 6-4, 6-2.