BASEL, Switzerland — On a tough day for seeded players in the Swiss Indoors first round, Stan Wawrinka rallied to beat 119th-ranked fellow Swiss Marco Chiudinelli 6-7 (1), 6-1, 6-4 on Tuesday.
Top-seeded Wawrinka advanced after second-seeded Milos Raonic and sixth-seeded Grigor Dimitrov both let one-set leads slip and exited early.
Wawrinka ended his own streak of four straight first-round losses in the hometown tournament of Roger Federer, whose season-ending injury ruled him out for the first time since 2005.
World No. 3 Wawrinka clinched victory with his 16th ace on his fifth match point chance against his Davis Cup teammate Chiudinelli. He next plays qualifier Donald Young of the United States.
The bottom half of the draw opened up Tuesday after Canada’s Raonic lost to Ricardas Berankis of Lithuania, a player ranked 87 places below him.
The fourth-ranked Raonic took the first set against his 91st-ranked opponent before falling to a 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 loss.
The 26-year-old Berankis now has two career wins against top 10 players, after also beating Raonic indoors in Moscow two years ago.
Dimitrov of Bulgaria let 37th-ranked Gilles Muller of Luxembourg fight back for a 6-7 (9), 6-4, 6-4 win after taking only one of his 10 break point chances against the 33-year-old left-hander.
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) Two-time former champion Victoria Azarenka has been awarded a wild card for the Australian Open.
Azarenka, who won the Australian Open in 2012 and 2013, has been involved in a custody dispute involving her son Leo, who was born last Dec. 19.
She hasn’t competed anywhere since Wimbledon, where she lost to Simona Halep in the fourth round on July 10. The dispute with her former partner started shortly after Wimbledon ended.
Azarenka has played only six matches this year and is ranked 208th.
Australian Open tournament director Craig Tiley said on Wednesday that every assistance would be provided to the former No. 1, adding “Vika’s current situation is obviously very difficult for her and we have reached out to offer any support we can.”
The Australian Open starts on Jan. 15.
LONDON — Rafael Nadal and Garbine Muguruza have won the International Tennis Federation’s player of the year awards.
At 31, Nadal becomes the oldest ITF men’s world champion after a season in which he won a 10th French Open and a third U.S. Open.
The Spaniard also became the oldest player to finish the year at No. 1 since the ATP rankings began in 1973.
Muguruza dropped only one set en route to her first Wimbledon title and finished the year at No. 2 behind Simona Halep.
“Becoming ITF world champion in such a competitive year is amazing for me,” said Muguruza, who is also Spanish. “(Nadal) is a great role model for all of us, so it is a great moment for tennis in Spain.”