BURNIE (Australia): India's struggling singles star Somdev Devvarman suffered yet another first round defeat and this time against a player who is ranked outside the bracket of 1600.
Third seed Somdev, competing in a USD 50,000 ATP Challenger tournament here, lost the contest 6-1 6-7(4) 4-6 to New Zealand qualifier Finn Tearney in two hours and 27 minutes.
World No 136 ranked Indian made a good start by running away with the first set, in which he broke the six feet tall Kiwi thrice and lost his serve one time.
Tearney shrugged off the poor start and put up a spirited fight to restore parity in the match. They broke each other twice in the second set and the Kiwi pocketed it by prevailing in the tie-breaker.
The third set was an intense affair. His confidence touching sky having taken a set from the dogged Indian, Tearney broke Somdev twice after dropping serve once in the decider to clinch the issue.
Somdev is also competing in the doubles event with compatriot Sanam Singh. They are seeded fourth and play Aussie pair of Maverick Anes and Gavin Van Peperzeel in their opening round.