Levy stays on course

By Mike Sinclair, June 16, 2009

Harel Levy pulled off the great escape to keep his 2009 Wimbledon hopes alive as he survived a scare in the opening round of singles qualifying at Roehampton.

The 31-year-old Israel Davis Cup stalwart battled through 5-7, 7-6, 6-3 against big-serving Australian Chris Guccione.

Levy was a point away from going out as 24-year-old Guccione, ranked 91 places above him at 140 in the world, served for the match at 5-4 in the second set.

He survived by chasing down a backhand, romped through the second set tie-break 7-0 and then capitalised on an early break of serve to take the deciding set.

"Match point down and on the run - that's as close as it can get," said Levy, who reached a career-high 30 in the world rankings back in 2001 but is now languishing at 231.

"That was very tough. Chris is a great server and he likes the grass here. I've played him a few times before and luckily I've beaten him but every time was close," said Levy who described his year so far as "up and down."

He added: "I've played some good matches and won a few so I'm hanging in there."

    Last updated: 1:41pm, June 16 2009