Thomaz Bellucci eager to finally beat Fabio Fognini

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Thomaz Bellucci eager to finally beat Fabio Fognini

Brazil's Thomaz Bellucci is eager to put on a good performance in front of his home fans against Italy's Fabio Fognini. Bellucci, 30, has been drawn to meet No. 5 seed Fognini in the Rio de Janeiro first round. The Brazilian has never ended on the winning side against the Italian.

Fognini, 30, has a 4-0 head-to-head record against Bellucci. All four of Fognini's win over the Brazilian came on an outdoor-clay surface. The Rio de Janeiro event is an outdoor-clay event. Bellucci is set to make his fifth straight appearance in Rio de Janeiro.

The Brazilian made the quarter-finals once at the event -- in 2014. "He (Fognini) won every time I played against him but every match is a different story. I'm very motivated to play in Brazil again," Bellucci said.

Bellucci, who was handed a five-month silent ban after testing positive for a banned substance, returned to the Tour in Quito at the beginning of February. The Brazilian lost in the Quito first round before he lost in the Buenos Aires last-16 last week.

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