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Schnyder eases through to Wimbledon second round

Patty Schnyder is one of only three Swiss to reach the second round at this year's Wimbledon tournament Keystone

Switzerland's Patty Schnyder has won a comfortable victory in her first-round match at the Wimbledon tennis tournament. The Basel-based player easily overcame her Canadian opponent, Jana Nejedly, in straight sets, 6-4, 6-4.

This content was published on June 26, 2001 - 22:41

If there was extra pressure on the Swiss to perform well in the opening round of the prestigious tournament, after the embarrassing first-round defeat of her compatriot Martina Hingis, Schnyder wasn't showing it on court.

The Swiss star has never hidden her dislike of the grass court surface, but her performance in the opening round proved she still has a chance of carrying the Swiss flag into the latter stages of the tournament.

After the match, however, Schnyder admitted she had not been fully confident of avoiding a first-round defeat: "I have to say I was a little nervous," she said, "but things happened to turn out well for me in the end."

Nejedly, who hails from Palm Springs, is currently languishing 120th in the WTA rankings and never looked like she was going to mount a serious challenge against her Swiss opponent, who is ranked 87 places above her in the official standings.

There was bad news in the men's tournament, however, as Bern's Michel Kratochvil became the fifth Swiss player to crash out of the Wimbledon tournament in the first round. He lost in straight sets to French ninth seed Sébastien Grosjean.

The Swiss men's number two never looked in contention against the world number eight, going out of Tuesday's match 6-3, 6-3, 6-4.

Kratochvil can at least reflect that he is in good company, having been knocked out of the tournament in the same round as Martina Hingis and Marc Rosset.

Hingis stunned

Hingis was stunned by Spain's Virginia Ruano Pascual on Monday, the world number one losing in straight sets (4-6, 2-6) to a player 82 places lower than her in the world rankings.

The surprise result marked only the fourth time in Wimbledon's long history that the top women's seed has lost in her opening match. Incredibly, though, it is the second time that it has happened to Hingis, following her first round defeat at the hands of Jelena Dokic two years ago.

Hingis later blamed her performance on tendinitis, which she said had almost forced her to abandon her appearance at the world famous grass-court tournament.

Former Swiss men's number one Marc Rosset suffered his sixth successive first round defeat when he lost his opening Wimbledon match to Magnus Larsson. The Genevan then deepened the Swiss gloom in south west London by announcing his immediate retirement from the sport.

Swiss qualifier, Ivo Heuberger, and Miroslava Vavrinec also saw their Wimbledon campaigns come to an end almost as soon as they had begun.

Roger Federer and Emmanuelle Gagliardi are the only two other Swiss players to have made it through to this year's second round.

swissinfo with agencies

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