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Davydenko slinks out unnoticed


 

Originally published on: 24/06/10 12:41

It escaped the attention of most, particularly the photographers – who all hotfooted it to court 18 for a snap of history quicker than it took most minds to process a 59-all score line yesterday – but Nikolay Davydenko was certainly aware of his downfall at the hands of world No.98 Daniel Brands.

The world No.5 fell 1-6 7-6(5) 7-6 6-1 to the German for his earliest Wimbledon exit since, errr well, 2008, when he bowed out in the first round to Brands’ compatriot Benjamin Becker.

Davydenko could perhaps take some consolation from the fact that nobody really knew it had happened. Press eyes and camera lenses weren’t overly interested in court 12. On any other day, a second round exit for the seventh seed would have been pretty heavy news.

There were numerous talking points. Roger Federer’s challenge for a seventh title has become a little easier after defeat removed the possibility of Davydenko facing the Swiss in the quarters. Davydenko’s frailty – both at Grand Slams and on English lawns – continues. The 28-year-old has made it beyond the second round just twice in his last eight visits to Wimbledon. To cap it all, world No.98 Brands defied his ranking, storming through the fourth set 6-1 after winning an astonishing 50% of points on Daydenko’s first serve to claim just his second career victory at a Grand Slam.

But all that was glossed over like the bladder yearnings of those unwilling to relinquish a prime seat on court 18. John Isner and Nicolas Mahut’s determination to play until Wimbledon 2011 spared Davydenko’s defeat too much attention. Unfortunately for 6ft5 Brands, it denied him the full glory of his feat.

Beat Hanescu tomorrow for a place in round four and the masses might sit up and take note of the 22-year-old.

That’s if Isner and Mahut aren’t still playing…

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