Djokovic, Ferrer, Stepanek advance

Updated: February 21, 2007, 5:54 PM ET
Associated Press

ROTTERDAM, Netherlands -- Fifth-seeded Novak Djokovic advanced to the ABN Amro quarterfinals Wednesday, beating Andrei Pavel 7-6 (8), 6-1, 6-3.

In another second-round match, sixth-seeded David Ferrer edged Kristof Vliegen 6-4, 6-2. Vliegen, who helped Belgium beat Australia in the Davis Cup this month, broke Ferrer early in the first set to take a 2-0 advantage and then led 4-2 before the Spaniard reeled off four straight games to take the set.

Ferrer then overpowered Vliegen in the second set.

Defending champion Radek Stepanek -- seeded eighth -- beat another Czech, Jan Hernych, 6-2, 7-5 in the first round.

Hernych struggled with an injury and had to take a time out for treatment at 5-5 in the second set. When Hernych returned to the court, Stepanek won the two games he needed to close out the match.

In an all-French first-round match, Marc Gicquel defeated Arnaud Clement 6-4, 6-3.


Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press

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