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Universiade tennis has "hot" start

2011-08-14 10:23:10 GMT2011-08-14 18:23:10(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

SHENZHEN, China, Aug. 14 (Xinhua) -- Shenzhen Universiade tennis players started their competition in hot weather here on Sunday.

When the first tennis match began at 10:00 am, the temperature reached 31 degrees centigrade, and the highest temperature went up as high as 34. The surface temperature of the fields stayed above 60 degrees centigrade.

"We had used 500 kilograms of ice to cool the 12 tennis courts," said Wang Jianbin, official of the tennis venue.

Organizers also provided iced drinks to players, spectators, journalists and the staff.

However, hot weather affected those who could not find shelters. One lineman was carried away from the court because of the heatstroke, while two volunteers working under the sunlight got sick because of the heat.

Some of the players had hot start in the hot weather, including local favourite Xu Junchao.

The 23-year-old male player kept his rival, Rami Alayli, at love from the beginning to the end in their 34-minute encounter.

"The spectators gave me a lot of support, and I thing my opponent was troubled by the heat," said the student athlete from Shanghai JiaoTong University.

The one-week Universiade tennis competition would produce seven gold medals.

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