Nadal battles to Wimbledon

Rafael Nadal recovered from a rusty start to power into the second round of Wimbledon with a straight-sets win over Brazil’s Thomaz Bellucci on Tuesday.


The two-time champion bounced back in style after losing the first four games of the match against the 80th-ranked Bellucci.


Nadal won the next four, before smashing his South American opponent 7-0 in the first-set tie break and then wrapping up the remaining sets 6-2 6-3.


Great Britain’s Andy Murray made an impressive start to the tournament as he bids to become the first home winner of the men’s singles since Fred Perry in 1936.


The world number four made short work of beating Russia’s Nikolay Davydenko 6-1 6-1 6-4, and the British number one also looked in peak physical form following recent fitness concerns.


But it was a day to forget for Australia’s men’s players, with none making the second round at the All England Club for the first time since 1938.


No. 20 seed Bernard Tomic, who made the quarterfinals last year, slumped to a surprise 3-6 6-3 6-4 6-4 defeat against Belgian wildcard David Goffin.


Compatriot Lleyton Hewitt, who was Wimbledon champion 10 years ago but needed a wildcard to qualify after an injury-plagued season, was no match for France’s Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.


The No. 5 seed showed no signs of the finger injury he suffered in the recent Aegon Championships, cruising to a 6-3 6-4 6-4 win over his Australian opponent.


Spain’s Feliciano Lopez, the No. 14 seed, fell to a surprise 7-6 3-6 7-6 6-4 defeat to Finland’s Jarkko Nieminen.


Fellow Spaniard Nicolas Almagro, seeded 12th, avoided the same fate after fighting back from two sets down to beat Belgium’s Olivier Rochus 6-7 3-6 7-6 6-2 6-4.


No. 10 seed Mardy Fish beat Spain’s Ruben Ramirez-Hidalgo 7-6 7-5 7-6 on his return to tennis after a heart operation.


An ATP tour spokesman said the player felt “unwell” after the victory, his first tournament match since undergoing surgery last month to correct faulty wiring in his heart.


The spokesman added Fish’s current condition was “nothing worrying”.





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