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Santoro bows out

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Originally published on: 26/02/10 12:31

The popular 36-year-old, playing for the 20th and last time at Roland Garros, returned aiming to turn his match against the Belgian around after bad light stopped play on Tuesday with Rochus leading 6-3 6-1 3-6 5-3.

But his dream ended after eight more minutes of action, Rochus clinching the fourth set 6-4.

Santoro, nicknamed ‘The Magician’, was given a standing ovation as he left Suzanne Lenglen court and he admitted it had been an emotional couple of days for him.

“I had a feeling I was turning the page in my life, even though I still have 10 tournaments left to play,” he said, when asked what he thought after losing match point.

“I will never play singles at Roland Garros again. But despite the fact I’ll be 37, I’m convinced I can play a great tournament at Wimbledon.”

Andy Murray’s next opponent Janko Tipsarevic was one of two players to upset seeds on Wednesday, the Serbian knocking out Feliciano Lopez, the 28th seed, with a four-set victory. The other was France’s Arnaud Clement, who beat Dmitry Tursunov 6-3 3-6 6-4 6-1.

Eighth seed Fernando Verdasco set up an intriguing third-round clash with fellow Spaniard Nicolas Almagro by thrashing Philipp Petzschner 6-1 6-2 6-3.

Gilles Simon needed five sets to get past Wayne Odesnik in the first round but the seventh seed had it easier on Wednesday, making round three with a 7-5 6-0 6-1 win over Robert Kendrick, another American.

Fernando Gonzalez (12), Marin Cilic (13), Stanislas Wawrinka (17) and Victor Hanescu (30) were other seeded players to win their second-round matches in straight sets.

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