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Nalbandian earn first berths to Tennis Masters Canada quarter-finals

David Nalbandian of Argentina upset fourth seed Tim Henman of Britain 4-6, 7-6 (7), 7-5 on Thursday to advance to the quarter-finals of the $2.95-million US Tennis Masters Canada tournament.

The talented Nalbandian survived three match points in the second set against Henman, in a match that lasted two hours and 50 minutes — the second-longest of the tournament thus far — in sweltering heat at the National Tennis Centre at York University.

Nalbandian was a surprise finalist at Wimbledon this year, losing to the world’s No. 1-ranked Lleyton Hewitt of Australia and becoming the first South American to reach the final since Peru’s Alex Olmedo defeated Rod Laver in 1959.

The upstart 20-year-old is the second youngest player remaining at the Tennis Masters Canada — American Andy Roddick is 19 — and his ATP rankings have plummeted over the last two seasons, from No. 248 in 2000 to No. 47 last season, to No. 15.

Nalbandian dispatched Cyril Saulnier of France and Tommy Robredo of Spain earlier in the tournament, in his first appearance here.

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