Second career title for Johansson

Associated Press

Adelaide, January 9:

Second-seeded Joachim Johansson of Sweden won his second career title with a 7-5, 6-3 win over Taylor Dent at the Australian men’s hardcourt tennis championship.

His first win was at Memphis in 2004, a breakthrough year in which he also made the semi-finals of the US Open and moved from 113th in the rankings to No 11.

Fifth-seeded Dent survived three break points in the fifth game of the match, but managed to keep the first set on serve until 5-5, when Johansson gained the first break.

Johansson took the score from deuce to a break point on a backhand return winner, then hit another crosscourt backhand return winner on the next point to take a 6-5 lead.

Johansson double-faulted on set point but followed that up with an ace to take the opening set. He broke Dent’s serve again in the third game of the second set.

Up 5-3, he finished the match by again breaking serve, blazing a forehand return winner to complete the victory on his fourth match point. Canberra Classic CANBERRA: Luxembourg’s Claudine Schaul defeated doubles partner and fifth-seeded Emilie Loit of France 7-5, 6-4 in the first-round of the Canberra Classic women’s tennis tournament.

In other first round play, eighth-seeded Tathiana Garbin of Italy beat Anne Kremer of Luxembourg 6-2, 6-1. Lindsay Lee-Waters of the United States beat Llagostera Vives of Spain 7-6, 6-1 and Germany’s Marlene Weingartner defeated Michaela Pastikova of the Czech Republic 6-3, 3-6, 6-2.

Sydney International

SYDNEY: Australian Mark Philippoussis confirmed on Sunday he will not play in the Sydney International tennis tournament this week after tearing his adductor muscle at last week’s Hopman Cup.

In a first-round women’s match at the Sydney International on Sunday, Nathalie Dechy of France beat American Lisa Raymond 7-5, 6-3. It was the only main draw men’s or women’s singles match played on Sunday.

Lleyton Hewitt of Australia, seeded No 1 in the men’s draw, begins his quest for a fourth Sydney title on Tuesday when he plays Slovakia’s Karol Beck.

Top-seeded Lindsay Davenport of the United States, who had a first-round bye, plays her second-round match on Tuesday against Dechy.

Defending champion Justine Henin-Hardenne of Belgium pulled out of the Sydney event and the Australian Open on Saturday with a knee injury.