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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Kafelnikov Lone Seed to Advance




TASHKENT, Uzbekistan -- Former world No. 1 Yevgeny Kafelnikov was the only seed to make it to the second round at the $500,000 President's Cup tennis tournament Tuesday.


Three other seeds in action in the Uzbek capital, Briton Greg Rusedski, Cedric Pioline of France and Russian Marat Safin all suffered first round defeats.


Second seed Rusedski was a straight-sets casualty of Italy's Laurence Tieleman, 6-3, 6-4, while sixth-seeded Safin retired in the third set of his match against Ville Liukko when trailing the Finn 4-6, 7-5, 3-1.


Fifth-seeded Pioline, who last week reached the semifinals at the U.S. Open, fell to Swiss teenager Roger Federer 6-4, 6-3 in the last match of the evening session.


Top seed Kafelnikov survived a dismal first set against fellow Russian Davis Cup teammate Andrei Cherkasov to advance with a 1-6, 6-3, 6-3 victory.


Despite hitting a dozen aces in his 64 minute match, Rusedski could not overcome his steady opponent as well as the elements.


"He adjusted better to a higher altitude and hotter climate than I did," Rusedski said.


Safin, however, had a different story and blamed food poisoning for his subpar performance.


"I simply lost all my strength today, and by the second set I knew that I would not finish the match," the teenager said.


On Monday, two other seeds, Slovaks Karol Kucera and Jan Kroslak, also bowed out in the first round.


Kroslak also complained of food poisoning. The No. 8 seed abandoned his match against Swiss Ivo Heuberger after losing the first set 6-2.


However, the tournament officials insisted it was bacteria rather than spoiled food that caused the upset stomachs in both players.