Thursday, May 29, 2008

Blake frustrated by loss

Seventh seed James Blake admitted he got his tactics all wrong in his surprise second-round defeat to Latvian teenager Ernests Gulbis at the French Open on Thursday.

The American joined David Nalbandian in becoming a high-profile casualty on day five at Roland Garros as he lost 7-6 (7/2) 3-6 7-5 6-3 to the 19-year-old.

Blake, who looked in decent form in his first-round match against Rainer Schuttler, is yet to progress beyond the third round in the French capital.

And he felt he only had himself to blame against Gulbis, who is appearing for only the second time in the Paris grand slam.

"I played the way too many commentators think I should be playing," said the 28-year-old.

"I didn't make too many errors and I didn't hit that many winners - that's the way a lot of them think I should play.

"Here is a good indication that that's not the way to win matches for me. There are a lot of guys out there that can dictate play against me if I try to play like that.

"It's really frustrating for me to play a match like that when I know my game. I was just a little too passive."

Gulbis will next play Nicolas Lapentti, who beat American Bobby Reynolds in four sets on Court Seven.

Argentina's Nalbandian, the sixth seed, let slip a two-set lead to go down to world number 145 Jeremy Chardy.

The French wildcard won 3-6 4-6 6-2 6-1 6-2, although Nalbandian - a two-time semi-finalist here - appeared to be moving gingerly towards the end of a match that lasted over three hours.

Nalbandian, who was a break up early in the final set, later admitted a muscle problem had hindered his movement.

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