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Bai Bai to Mildura top seed

February 20th 2013 10:21
A WEST Australian former junior star and forgotten Canberrian stole the show at the Mildura International today.
Last year’s runner-up Brydan Klein, the 2007 Australian Open boys’ singles champion, reversed his last-start defeat to Nick Kyrgios with a 7-6(2), 6-4 win in their opening round match.
Klein had just one victory from four 2013 starts before today’s result.
The 23-year-old next meet’s Japan’s Masato Shiga, who ousted Australian qualifier Matt Langley 6-1, 6-3.
Alison Bai produced the biggest upset of the day, eliminating South African No. 1 seed Chanel Simmonds – a Launceston quarter-finalist – 6-4, 6-3 for her first main draw success this year.
Bai has had a tough couple of years after peaking at 397 at the start of 2011 and was unable to progress from qualifying at Burnie or Launceston in the past month.
But she was still able to inflict Simmonds’ second round one defeat in Australia this year.

ACT's Alison Bai knocked top-seeded South African Chanel Simmonds out of the Mildura International.

Simmonds wasn’t the only women’s seed to fall, with Japan’s Miyabi Inoue and Misa Eguchi going down to respective opponents Viktorija Rajicic, of Victoria, and Yafan Wang.
West Australian No. 4 seed Bojana Bobusic had no such worries, giving up just four games in disposing of Japan’s Emi Mutaguchi.
Russian Ksenia Lykina, the No. 3 seed, and Japan’s Mari Tanaka, the No. 8 seed, also advanced, while Victorian Tammi Patterson set up a second round clash with No. 2 seed Yurika Sema.
But Patterson’s countrywomen Ashley Keir and Belinda Woolcock exited the tournament at Brit Emily Webley-Smith’s and Pole lucky loser Zuzanna Maciejewska’s hands, respectively.
Maciejewska replaced West Australian Storm Sanders (abdominal strain), the Launceston champion, in the draw.
Among the big-name men to progress were Victorian Sam Groth, 2011 junior Wimbledon champion Luke Saville and defending champion Hiroki Moriya.
Groth downed Daniel Guccione 7-5, 6-1, Saville crushed Ruan Roelofse 6-3, 6-2 and Moriya trounced NSW teenager Jordan Thompson 6-1, 6-2.
Other winners were South Australian doubles specialist Colin Ebelthite – Moriya’s next opponent – Slovak Ivo Klec, Italian No. 7 seed Andrea Arnaboldi, teenage NSW qualifier Jay Andrijic and Japan’s Yasutaka Uchiyama.

See Mildura International men's singles draw here

See Mildura International women's singles draw here

I am the Shepparton News' sports editor and hope to start a tennis website this year. Follow me on Twitter at @Marc_tennis and/or @marcmcgowan84.

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