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Safin contemplates future after Paris Masters loss
Two-time Grand Slam champion Marat Safin is considering retirement after a 6-0, 7-6 (4) loss to Juan Monaco in the first round of the Paris Masters yesterday.
Safin, a former top-ranked player and a three-time champion at the Paris tournament, wants a long break before making a decision.
"I don't know what happened. Just couldn't find my rhythm and couldn't find the game," the 28-year-old Russian said. "I need to think everything through. I have no pressure and I have nothing to prove or show. I just want to be comfortable with my decision, whatever I will take."
Safin managed only 12 points in the first set and trailed 2-0 in the second after just 24 minutes. In the first service game of the second set, Safin had four double faults before breaking back to 2-2.
Enjoy my life
"I need to sit down and relax and just enjoy my life without any tennis (for) a couple of months and then I will see," Safin said. "If I feel like I want to continue to play, I will. If not, it will be over."
Safin won the United States (US) Open in 2000 and the Australian Open in 2005. He hasn't won a tour title since the victory in Australia.
"I've been struggling throughout my career with injuries left and right," said Safin, who is ranked 31st. "It's a little bit uncomfortable to find yourself in the top 10 for many years and to find yourself ranked 70 and 30 and 50 ... It's not really a comfortable position."
Also yesterday, former champion Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic, Marin Cilic of Croatia and Nicolas Kiefer of Germany all advanced to the second round in straight sets.
Berdych, the 2005 winner, eased past Robby Ginepri of the US 6-4, 7-5, Cilic downed Andreas Seppi of Italy 7-6 (5), 6-2, and Kiefer beat big-serving Ivo Karlovic of Croatia 6-4, 7-5. Simone Bolelli beat Jarkko Nieminen 7-5, 6-4.
"He broke me twice, then he got a bit tired when he was serving for the set and I took advantage of that," Cilic said.
Sam Querrey of the United States advanced to a second-round match against fourth-seeded Andy Murray. The big-serving Querrey had secured a break in the third set and was leading 7-5, 6-7 (5), 3-2 when Marcos Baghdatis retired.
Baghdatis, a Paris semi-finalist last year, quit after calling a trainer to massage his lower back. He had also pulled out during the second set against Karlovic at Metz on September 30.
"I felt a sharp pain and I didn't want to take any risks," Baghdatis said. "I felt that if I continued, I would have had problems afterward. So I preferred to stop."