Rusedski dispatches Gaudio

Last updated at 08:38 05 August 2004

Greg Rusedski held his nerve to secure a hard-fought 4-6 7-6 (7-3) 6-4 victory against Gaston Gaudio to book his passage into the third round of the Cincinnati Masters.

After a torrential downpour of rain had delayed the start of the match by more than four hours, the British number two served and claimed the opening game, before Gaudio's strong passing shots saw him level at one apiece.

Rusedski, still buoyant from his recent victory in Newport, then edged 2-1 ahead before Gaudio twice equalised the Canada-born Brit at 3-3 before going 4-3 ahead and eventually claiming the first set 6-4.

A similar pattern emerged in the second set but with Rusedski still not able to break Gaudio's serve, the Argentinian levelled at 4-4 before Rusedski wasted little time in cruising through his own service game, sealing a second successive one to love with a sixth ace.

The pendulum of momentum swung towards Rusedski, but he could not break Gaudio's serve and at 6-6, the set went to a tie-break, which Rusedski won 7-3 to level the match at one set all.

Rusedski's body language and overall demeanour became far more positive in the third set as the Brit sealed an excellent win over the world number nine with a forehand volley to complete a tense affair and boost his confidence yet further ahead of the US Open.