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Philippoussis reaches quarters in Hall of Fame tourney

7/12/2006 - Tennis

NEWPORT, R.I. -- Mark Philippoussis advanced to the
quarterfinals of the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships with a 6-3,
6-4 win over Rik De Voest on Wednesday.

Philippoussis, a two-time Grand Slam finalist ranked as high as
No. 9 in the world in 2003, coasted to a straight-set victory for
the second consecutive day as he tries to regain his form after two
injury-plagued seasons.

"My confidence is back," he said. "I'm enjoying my
competing."

In the only other second-round matches completed before rain
ended the day's play, sixth-seeded Jurgen Melzer advanced with a
6-4, 3-6, 6-4 win over Frank Dancevic, and Robert Kendrick defeated
Igor Kunitsyn 6-4, 6-2.

Philippoussis, a 2003 Wimbledon finalist, injured his ankle in
March 2005 and was limited to two matches the remainder of the
year.

He had left knee surgery in 2000 and '01 before aggravating the
same knee at the 2002 U.S. Open.

The next year he returned and helped Australia win the Davis
Cup.

He coasted against De Voest despite getting 49 percent of his
first serves in play.

"I didn't feel like I had great rhythm," he said. "It was
kind of a patchy match. I felt like I could have done a little
better. All in all, the win's the important thing."

Earlier this season, he was awarded a wild card to Wimbledon.
But he lost in the second round after finishing out of the top 100
rankings the last two years.

In matches stopped by rain: No. 8 seed Justin Gimelstob led
Wayne Arthurs 6-3, 2-3; Kristian Pless was ahead of Paul Capdeville
5-4; and Alex Bogdanovic was in front of George Bastl 2-1. The
matches are scheduled to resume Thursday.