HCM CITY (VNS)— Cheers from fans and an indomitable fighting spirit were not enough for Viet Nam's young tennis talent, Nguyen Hoang Thien, to advance to the second round at the Viet Nam F2 Futures, part of the International Tennis Federation's (ITF) Men's Circuit.
Thien lost to Andrew Fitzpatrick of Great Britain in straight sets in the first round at Phu Tho Tennis Club yesterday.
The host nation's young player showed composure and confidence at the beginning of the match under scorching hot temperatures in HCM City while dozens of fans in the stands supported him.
In the first set, the 17-year-old player had the first break point of the match, but Fitzpatrick managed to escape and both players kept their service games.
Fitzpatrick broke during the sixth game to go up 4-2 and won his service game to lead 5-2 before getting another break point.
He capitalised on Thien's poor serves with forehand returns in the eight game to take the first set at 6-2.
The serves dominated the second until the set was 3-3 and Fitzpatrick once again took advantage of Thien's poor first serve to break during the eight game to lead 5-3, thanks to unstoppable forehand serve returns.
Thien suddenly surged back to win two games in a row to put the set on equal terms, but poor first serves, unforced errors and inconsistent hitting cost him as Fitzpatrick claimed the next two games to finish the set at 7-5.
Fitzpatrick will next play Sebastian Wagner of Germany, who defeated Cambodian Kenny Bun 6-4, 6-4.
Ly Hoang Nam, Viet Nam's only representative in the second round, will face a huge challenge today as his opponent is the Viet Nam F1 Futures champions, Laurent Recouderc of France. — VNS