Alejandro Davidovich serves. / AFP

Malaga's Alejandro Davidovich falls to Kotov at the Astana Open tennis

The Rincón de la Victoria local did not perform as well as usual following a month-long recovery from a knee injury

PEDRO LUIS ALONSO

Alejandro Davidovich was knocked out in the first round of the Astana Open on Tuesday, as he was defeated 6-4 and 6-4 by Pavel Kotov. The Rincón de la Victoria local's early exit comes after a month-long recovery from a knee injury he sustained at the US Open.

The Andalusian's poor run of form tournaments continues, where he has been defeated in the opening round in eleven of the 23 competitions he's taken part in.

In a match that lasted just over an hour and 40 minutes, Davidovich left a lot to be desired on court. It was obvious from the start that he wasn't at his very best and there was a clear lack of rythm from him.

Struggling all around

It looked like the Rincón local was swimming against the tide. He committed a double fault and had his serve broken in the very first game. To add to his pain, Kotov wasn't playing particularly well, only that his serve and shots were always hitting deep, but the Russian couldn't even hit an ace.

Davidovich found some strength to avoid a double break and pull back a game to make it 4-4, though Kotov still closed the set - even if it took him four set points.

The second set was a carbon copy of the first. Kotov managed an early break, before Davidovich levelled the set to 4-4, but ultimately losing the set as he had his serve broken in the very next game and giving his Russian opponent the win.

The latter stages of the year have been unkind to the Rincón local, who has achieved some impressive things in 2022, namely making it to the Monte Carlo Masters finals or a good run in the US Open.

His next tournament will be from 8 October at the Gijón Open, where he is seeded. A good performance is a must, as his chances of playing for Spain in the Davis Cup Finals hangs in the balance.