David Ferrer rocks Mikhail Youzhny
PARIS -- Mikhail Youzhny was having such a bad day in the third round of the French Open that he felt the need to apologize, right on court during the match.
The 27th-seeded Russian scraped "SORRI" into the clay with his right foot in the middle of his 6-0, 6-2, 6-2 loss to No. 6 David Ferrer on Saturday.
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"There was a lot of people. That's why I write 'sorry.' Because I can't show them a nice game," Youzhny said. "The way we played in the beginning, it was not really interesting for people."
Youzhny is well-known for a more painful on-court meltdown. In 2008 at the Sony Ericsson Open, Youzhny whacked himself in the head with his racket three times after losing a point. The antic left him with a thick stream of blood running from his hairline down his nose.
Rafael Nadal on the other hand, had no reason for contrition.
Nadal improved his record at the clay-court tournament to 48-1, beating Eduardo Schwank of Argentina 6-1, 6-3, 6-4.
The second-seeded Spaniard has lost only 17 games in nine sets at this year's tournament.
"I'm in the second week, so that's the important thing," Nadal said. "I start the most difficult week now with a big confrontation against Monaco. He's playing great. He's having a fantastic season."
Fourth-seeded Andy Murray also advanced, showing no ill effects of a bad back he complained of during a second-round win.
He beat Colombia's Santiago Giraldo a 6-3, 6-4, 6-4. Murray never lost his serve and faced break point only once in the 2 hour, 2 minute win.
"When you're playing in Slams, I just think each day you need to take it as it comes," Murray said. "And I felt much better than I did the other day."
Murray, trying to reach the semifinals of a Grand Slam tournament for the sixth straight time, will next face Richard Gasquet.
Against Ferrer, Youzhny won his first game early in the second set, making it 2-1. He held serve at love when Ferrer sent a forehand return into the net. But instead of heading straight for his chair for the changeover, he stopped just inside the service line and started writing out his message.
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A ball boy stood nearby with Youzhny's towel, and then backed off as the Russian continued drawing out the letters.
"People in the stands may not have noticed, but I think I had to do this," Youzhny said.
Ferrer said he didn't even see it.
"I don't know why he put this in the court, but I don't have (anything) to say," said Ferrer, who is in the fourth round at Roland Garros for the fourth time.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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