Hamburg: Defending champion Andrey Golubev of Kazakhstan and Spanish clay court ace Juan Carlos Ferrero both fell at the first hurdle to German challengers at the ATP Hamburg tournament here on Tuesday.
Last weekend`s Stuttgart winner Ferrero fell 6-3, 6-2 to German wild card Cedrik-Marcel Stebe while Golubev, a surprise winner here last year, crashed out 7-5, 6-3 in his first round match to Philipp Kohlschreiber.
"It was a tough match," said Kohlschreiber, who converted four of his 10 break point chances. "I knew he didn`t win so many matches this year, but of course if you feel great at a place like here -- you`re the winner from last year -- you always know you can play very good. I knew he was very dangerous today."
Stebe, ranked just 168th, made light work of former world number one Ferrero, who had marked his return from injury by winning on the same surface in Stuttgart on Sunday.
At 20 years Stebe is the youngest competitor in the tournament and is next set for a rematch with Russian Nikolay Davydenko, who beat him in a three-setter in the first round in Stuttgart last week.
Pablo Andujar, losing finalist in Stuttgart, beat Julien Benneteau of France 6-2, 6-2.
Radek Stepanek, the 2006 runner-up to Tommy Robredo, saved all four break points he faced and hit eight aces past German wild card Andreas Beck for a 7-5, 7-6 (7/2) win.
Argentine Juan Monaco achieved his 15th win in 17 matches on clay this season, beating Italian qualifier Simone Bolelli 6-3, 7-5.
In second round action, German wild card Tobias Kamke, ranked 90th, ousted seventh-seeded Argentine Juan Ignacio Chela 6-1, 6-4.
French fifth seed Gilles Simon advanced to the third round beating Ukrainian qualifier Sergiy Stakhovsky 6-2, 6-1, along with Jarkko Nieminen who beat another Ukrainian, 10th seed Alexandr Dolgopolov, 6-3, 1-6, 6-4.