Paulo started the match well, once again paining the lines with good accuracy.Due to a slight slippage in the later parts of the set found himself staring at Cipolla serving at 5-4. He managed to break though and eventually take it 7-5. Everything was going according to the plan, until the wind picked up significantly at the begining of set number two. Since Paul-Henri's game's strength is based on flat ball and pace, the change in weather threw him off significantly and the numerous unforced errors followed. Result? Set to Cipolla, 6-3. Final set starter well for PHM, a break and a few minutes laterhe was 3-1 up and looking comfortable. And that's when errors started to pour down for no particular reason (although the wind was still a bit of a factor) and he's not win another game for the rest of the match.
The scenario, see eerily similar to his lost to Jarkko Nieminen two years ago at the very tournament after leading 5-2 in the 3rd set, must be giving the player and all his fans a taste of the, sometimes painfully predictable and awfully frustrating, Paul-Henri Mathieu Experience.
Unlike in 2010, however, he won't be getting a chance to sneak into the Main Draw due to low ranking (172 as of last week).
Photos by MegiMK. More after the jump.