Tennis: Statham goes down in first round

By Michael Brown

Rubin Statham. Photo / Getty
Rubin Statham. Photo / Getty

Rubin Statham was ousted from the Heineken Open this afternoon when he was beaten 6-3 6-1 by Lukas Lacko in 69 minutes, leaving the singles draw shorn of any Kiwis midway through the first round.

Statham had been handed a kind draw, taking on a qualifier, but he was no match for Lacko who is ranked 90 in the world but was as high as 44 in January last year.

Lacko controlled the match and came under little pressure as he broke Statham's serve twice in each set. The Slovakian worked Statham, ranked 288, around the court and waited for the error, which invariably came.

It was Statham's fourth appearance at the Heineken Open, with his best result progression to the second round in 2010 when he beat fellow Kiwi Dan King-Turner.

Three New Zealanders were beaten in the final round of qualifying yesterday. Statham will play doubles with compatriot Michael Venus - the pair received a wildcard - with their first-round match against third seeds Jamie Murray and John Peers.


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