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    RUSSIA'S FIRST RACKET TO TRY BEAT WORLD FIRST RACKET IN DUBAI

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    ABU DHABI, MARCH 2-RIA NOVOSTI - Russian tennis players Marat Safin, Mikhail Yuzhny and Nikolai Davidenko started their matches at the Dubai tournament with its $1m prize this Tuesday.

    The second day is certain to be highlighted by a duel between the world's first racket of Switzerland's Roger Federer and second racket of Marat Safin who skipped the stage of seed players. Instead, the Russian Giant received an individual invitation from the organisers and sponsors of the tournament (wild card).

    Federer and Safin confronted each on tennis courts five times, with the Swiss player claiming indisputable lead. He came on top four times, including the finals of the Australian Open in 2004: the score was 7:6, 6:4, 6:2. Safin beat Federer only once, at the Moscow Kremlin Cup competition in 2002.

    The Safin-Federer duet to appear on the Dubai courts at 6:00 Moscow Time is exciting wide interest. Among other tennis favourites in Dubai are David Nalbandian from Argentina, British Tim Henman and Australia's Mark Filippussis/

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