Marc Rosset is through to the second round of the Gstaad tennis tournament, after winning Tuesday's all-Swiss encounter against his doubles partner George Bastl.This content was published on July 9, 2002 - 14:48
The first round match proved as tight as one might expect from two players who know each other's game so well.
The different playing styles employed by the two Swiss also made for an entertaining contest, with Bastl frequently rushing to the net in response to Rosset's power-strokes from the baseline.
In the end, though, it was the giant Genevan's formidable serves that helped him to clinch the match in three sets (7-6, 3-6, 6-3).
After losing his way somewhat in the second set, Rosset appeared unstoppable in the third, dropping just two points on his serve - and one of those was a double fault.
"I was definitely pleased with my serving today, and particularly how well my second serve was going," Rosset told swissinfo. "That will be good for my game and my confidence."
"It's never easy when you play one of your own countrymen," Rosset added, "and the extra pressure isn't usually good for the quality of the game but I thought we both played pretty well today and it certainly wasn't an easy win."
Loud applause from the Gstaad crowd greeted Rosset's victory with appreciation for Bastl's effort clearly mixed in. The overall effect on Swiss hopes at this year's tournament was known beforehand of course, with Rosset becoming the first homegrown player through to the second round and Bastl becoming the third Swiss to suffer an early exit.
"Marc served really big in that third set and I had no chance against him," Bastl reflected. "I lost a little concentration during one game in that third set and it turned out to be the only service game I dropped today - but that was enough to decide the match."
While Bastl will now be concentrating on the doubles tournament, with Rosset back on his side of the net, Rosset himself can bank on the crowd's full support in the second round of the singles.
by Mark Ledsom, Gstaad
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