Momentum is hard to change, as tennis fans discovered watching two Israelis yesterday at Wimbledon's Court No. 8. Shahar Peer entered the tournament after four straight losses and was upset by her unseeded opponent, while Dudi Sela rode his 15-match winning streak toward a straight-set victory to advance to the second round.
Despite being knocked out of the first rounds at Brussels, Roland Garros and Eastbourne, the 22nd-seed Peer was still the favorite over 20-year-old Ksenia Pervak of Russia, who had never won a Grand Slam match. Peer broke the No. 89 player in the world in the final game of the first set to win 7-5 and led 2-1 in the second set before Pervak took control and sent Peer to yet another first-round exit.
Sela's match followed Peer on the same court, and the Israeli showed the confidence he had built up through three consecutive Challenger tournament titles. Sela, who is back in the Top 100 this year at number 83, swept 91st-ranked Frederico Gil of Portugal 6-4, 6-1, 6-4.
In the second round he will meet the winner between Frenchmen Edouard Roger-Vasselinn and 15th-seeded Gilles Simon. Their match was suspended with Simon leading two sets to one but Roger-Vasselinn leading the fourth set 5-4.
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