Tsonga and Venus exit Flushing Medows

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Updated: August 31, 2012

French fifth seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga became the first major casualty of the US Open on Thursday when he slumped to a 6-4, 1-6, 6-1, 6-3 defeat to unheralded Slovak Martin Klizan.

His defeat was good news for British third seed Andy Murray, the Olympic champion, who had been due to face the Frenchman in the semifinals.

Elsewhere on Thursday, Spanish 11th seed Nicolas Almagro fought back to beat Philipp Petzschner 6-3, 5-7, 5-7, 6-4, 6-4.

Top seed and five-time champion Roger Federer reached the last 32 with an easy 6-2, 6-3, 6-2 win over Germany’s Bjorn Phau and next faces Spain’s Fernando Verdasco, whom he has beaten four times in four matches.

Men’s sixth seed Tomas Berdych eased past Estonia’s Jurgen Zopp 6-1, 6-4, 6-2 and faces America’s Sam Querrey next.

American 23rd seed Mardy Fish, a quarterfinalist in 2008, beat Russia’s Nikolay Davydenko, a semifinalist in 2006 and 2007, in a gruelling five-setter.

His 4-6, 6-7 (4/7), 6-2, 6-1, 6-2 win was the 10th comeback victory from two sets-to-love down in the men’s tournament this year.

Two-time women’s champion Venus Williams was knocked out in the second round of the US Open on Thursday, losing 6-2, 5-7, 7-5 to German sixth seed, and 2011 semifinalist, Angelique Kerber, who also knocked the American out of the Olympics.

Kerber has now won a tour-leading 55 matches in 2012.

Sister Serena, the three-time champion, won her 60th match at the US Open, advancing to the third round with a 6-2, 6-4 victory over Spain’s Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez.

Serena, the Wimbledon and Olympic champion, will next face Russia’s Ekaterina Makarova, who beat her at the Australian Open this year.

Former world No 1 Ana Ivanovic overcame her lack of hardcourt preparation and cruised into the third round with a 6-2 6-2 victory over Swede Sofia Arvidsson.

Fellow Serb Jelena Jankovic, seeded 30th and the 2008 runner-up, also made the third round with a 6-4, 6-2 win over Spain’s Lara Arruabarrena-Vecino.

She next meets second seed Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland, who won 10 straight games as she recovered to beat Carla Suarez Navarro of Spain 4-6 6-3 6-0.