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Black day in store for Henman at Queen's.

HENMANIA kicked off in earnest at Queen's Club yesterday when that nice lad from Oxfordshire began his grass court campaign with a victory.

Henman won in straight sets against American world No 81 Cecil Mamiit in his second round tussle in the Stella Artois Championship, but needed a tiebreak to finish off his portly opponent and appeared to need the run-out.

The British No 1's reward is a third-round encounter with Byron Black, and it's a potentially much tougher match than the bookies expect.

Henman can rarely justify odds of 1-3 against anyone these days, and a player of Black's calibre deserves support at 2-1.

Black, beaten by Henman in four sets at last year's Wimbledon, reached the semis here 12 months ago, a week before making the final at Nottingham.

In short, he is at home on grass and without an ounce of pressure on his shoulders, the 13th seed, who dropped only three games against Swiss Roger Federer in the first round, will fancy his chances.

If Henman isn't a 1-3 chance, then the out-of-form Goran Ivanisevic is even less trustworthy and even more absurdly priced at 1-4.

Opponent SEBASTIAN LAREAU claimed a good scalp yesterday in fast-improving Michael Kohlmann.
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Title Annotation:Sports
Author:Davies, Steve
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Date:Jun 10, 1999
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