Andy Roddick's woes continued yesterday as he was dumped out of the Rome Masters by Gilles Simon.
The American's poor run of form in recent week has seen him short of wins which has led to him sliding out of the world's top ten.
Roddick has always found it tough on the red stuff but his lose in Rome is his second consecutive first round defeat, falling to an inspired Flavio Cipolla in Madrid.
Simon broke Roddick in the opening game of the contest, and immediately had the upper hand, which was enough to see him take the first set.
In the second it looked like Roddick was starting to find some rhythm when he broke Simon early.
But the American couldn't hold onto the advantage as Simon got the set back on level terms before breaking for a second time to win 6-3 6-3.
Speaking to the BBC after the match Roddick said: "Nobody likes losing. I'm trying at the moment but the last couple of weeks I haven't felt comfortable.
"Playing some different surfaces is like chalk and cheese. An indoor fast court in Memphis is very different to here but I feel great physically. I feel fine, there's no excuses."
Xavier Malisse was also in action yesterday as he saw off Guillermo Garcia Lopez in the opening round.
Despite a close opening set the Belgian ran away with the second, notching up a 7-5 6-2, which could have been a more convincing victory if he had broke more than four times from ten opportunities.
He will now face Andy Murray in the second round later today after the Scot, and world number four, received a first round bye.
There were also wins for Jo-Wilfred Tsonga as he came through against Marcos Baghdatis 6-3 6-2 to set up a clash with Roger Federer.
And it wasn't all doom and gloom for the Americans as Mardy Fish, now the American #1, came through in three sets against Santiago Giraldo 4-6 6-2 6-2.
FemaleFirst Helen Earnshaw
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