Lopez out after first round at SA Open
Defending champion Feliciano Lopez of Spain joined the parade of seeded players exiting the SA Tennis Open, becoming the fourth to fall Wednesday when he lost 6-7 (5), 6-2, 7-6 (8) to Frank Dancevic of Canada in the first round.
Third-seeded Janko Tipsarevic of Serbia and seventh-seeded Rainer Schuettler of Germany also lost in their opening matches, while eighth-seeded Michal Przysiezny of Poland lost 6-3, 6-4 to Rik de Voest of South Africa in the second round.
No. 4 Kevin Anderson and No. 6 Adrian Mannarino are the only seeded players remaining.
Lopez saved three match points against Dancevic in the deciding tiebreaker, but then sent a backhand into the net on his only match point, opening the door for Dancevic's rally.
Lopez failed to convert any of his 10 break-point opportunities.
''When you miss a lot of chances, this is what happens,'' Lopez said. ''I just missed so many chances. I didn't like the first-round (draw). Dancevic is so dangerous. He is very talented.''
The 26-year-old Dancevic, ranked more than 200 places below Lopez, said it was his biggest win since coming off back surgery late in 2009 that sidelined him for 10 months.
''I really thought I didn't have much chance against Feliciano, he's the defending champion,'' Dancevic said. ''Tennis is a funny game. Anyone can beat anyone on any given day. That's the way it is on the tour these days.''
Earlier, Schuettler, like Lopez and Tipsarevic, wasted an early lead in falling 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 to Go Saeda of Japan.
Jesse Huta Galung of the Netherlands, ranked No. 120, ousted the No. 51-ranked Tipsarevic 6-7 (4), 6-4, 7-6 (4) in a rain-delayed match held over from Tuesday.
''Everything went wrong today,'' Tipsarevic said. ''All respect to my opponent, but this is one of my worst performances in a long time. All the decisions I made went wrong.''
Huta Galung's joy was short-lived as he then lost to India's Somdev Devvarman in the second round in his second match on the tournament's third day.
Dudi Sela of Israel got past Edouard Roger-Vasselin of France 1-6, 7-5, 6-4 in another first-round match held over from Tuesday and South African wild card Fritz Wolmarans hit 25 aces to beat Igor Sijsling of Netherlands 4-6, 6-3, 6-4.
Slovakia's Karol Beck beat Brian Dabul of Argentina 7-5, 7-6 (4) in their first-round match.
De Voest, another South African wild card, became the first player to gain the last eight in reaching his first ATP quarterfinal.