Mixed showing for Swiss players ahead of US Open

It took Lorenzo Manta three sets to dispose of Armenia's Sargis Sargisian. Keystone / Arno Balzarini

The job of defending Switzerland's honour on the United States tennis circuit has fallen to Michel Kratochvil and Lorenzo Manta, after two of their fellow countrymen were defeated in their first round matches.

This content was published on August 16, 2000 - 12:14

Playing in Indianapolis on Tuesday, Kratochvil (ATP 113) had a smooth victory over the American, Philipp King (ATP 320), in the first round of that ATP tournament.

The same could not be said of Roger Federer (ATP 40). He fell in two sets (6-4, 7-5) to Australia's James Sekulov (ATP 191).

Ivo Heuberger (ATP 203) had an equally disastrous start in the first round of the tournament in Washington. Facing Britain's Barry Cowan (ATP 180), he managed to take the first set in a tie-break, but collapsed in the second, and went on to lose the match 6-7 (3-7), 6-2, 6-4.

It was left to Lorenzo Manta (ATP 174) to salvage Switzerland's honour - he defeated the Armenian, Sargis Sargisian (ATP 74), after three gruelling sets, 7-5, 6-7 (2-7), 6-4.

The results mean that Kratochvil will now face Albert Costa (ATP 23), and Manta will meet Chile's Fernando Gonzalez (ATP 133).

The ATP tournaments are seen as a crucial indicator of things to come in the US Open, the last grand slam of the season.

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