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Soderling glides, Ferrer falls in Rotterdam

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Originally published on: 09/02/11 09:49

Defending champ Robin Soderling got off to the most solid of starts at the ABN-AMRO World Tennis Tournament, crushing Dutch wildcard Robin Haase 6-3 6-2 in under an hour on Tuesday.

The Swede, who was upset by Alexandr Dolgopolov in the fourth round of the Australian Open, returned to winning ways in Rotterdam, where he beat Mikhail Youzhny to the title last year.

Fellow seeds Ivan Ljubicic and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga also progressed, with the Croat defeating Sergiy Stakhovsky 7-6(3) 6-3 and Tsonga seeing off talented Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov 6-4 6-4.

“They call my opponent ‘Baby Federer’ but there is a huge difference between the two,” said the Frenchman afterwards. “Federer doesn’t give you any chances. Grigor did a lot of double faults (six, in fact), and game away some easy points.”

Meanwhile, world No.6 David Ferrer may have defeated Rafael Nadal to reach the semi-finals in Melbourne, but he was dumped out in his Rotterdam opener, losing to world No.43 Jarkko Nieminen in straight sets.

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