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Rik goes down fighting

By Mark Etheridge

South African lucky loser Rik de Voest’s Australian Open ended with defeat in Melbourne on Monday.

De Voest came through qualifying as a lucky loser after Germany’s Florian Meyer pulled out with a hip injury at the weekend.

And De Voest grabbed his chance with both hands, fighting to the very last before going down in five sets to Taiwan’s Yen-Hsun Lu.

The two were out on a hot Court 13 for 200 minutes and it proved to be an unlucky court number for De Voest. The 31-year-old lost the first set 4-6, levelled matters with a 6-3 win in the second but then lost the third in just half an hour, 1-6.

He bounced back to take the fourth 6-3 but lost the deciding set by the same margin in the match’s longest set of 48 minutes.

De Voest had seven aces compared to seven by Lu but could only convert three of his nine break-point opportunities. Lu will now play Italian Florent Serra in the second round.


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