Tuesday, August 12, 2003

Moya out in opener collapse

First-round struggles continue

By Colleen Kane
The Cincinnati Enquirer


Photos of Monday's play
MASON - Defending champion Carlos Moya couldn't explain his early exit Monday from the Western & Southern Financial Group Masters.

The No. 4 seed was defeated by unseeded Frenchman Fabrice Santoro 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 in the first round.

"I have no reason that I play that bad," said Moya, who defeated Lleyton Hewitt in the final last year. "It's very disappointing. Being the defending champion and having support from the crowd in a country which is not mine, it's really bad to lose that match."

It was Moya's third consecutive first-round loss, after bowing out in Montreal and Sopot, Poland, the last two weeks. He has fallen to seventh in the ATP rankings.

He wasn't the only seeded player to fall Monday.

Wild card entry and 2000 champion Thomas Enqvist defeated No. 17 Felix Mantilla 6-3, 7-6 (5). No. 12 Jiri Novak, No. 15 Tommy Robredo, and No. 16 Martin Verkerk also lost.

Crowd-favorite Michael Chang had a match point but was eventually defeated by qualifier Hicham Arazi.

Among today's highlights

• Third-ranked Juan Carlos Ferrero, the tournament's top seed after Andre Agassi's withdrawal, plays Nikolay Davydenko.

• Fourth-ranked American Andy Roddick will face qualifier Fernando Verdasco.

• Second-ranked Roger Federer will play qualifier Scott Draper.

• No. 5 seed Hewitt will face Xavier Malisse.

• Gustavo Kuerten, the 2001 champion and 14th seed, will play Mariano Zabaleta.


E-mail ckane@enquirer.com

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