PARIS – Swiss tennis star Roger Federer kicked off his 2019 French Open campaign with ease against Grand Slam rookie, Italy’s Lorenzo Sonego.
The third-seeded Federer needed one hour and 42 minutes to edge 73rd-ranked Sonego with a 6-2, 6-4, 6-4 win, to prove that the injury that forced him to withdraw from Rome last week was a thing of past.
In the second round, the 37-year-old Swiss, world No.3, is set to play 145th-ranked Oscar Otte of Germany who advanced past Tunisia’s Malek Jaziri 6-3, 6-1, 4-6, 6-0.
Meanwhile, fifth-seeded Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece started his Roland Garros run with an easy 6-2, 6-2, 4-6 (7-4) win over Germany’s Maximilian Marterer, world No. 110, after one hour and 49 minutes of play.
The 20-year-old rising star has confident clay performances under his belt so far this season, reaching the 2019 Madrid Masters final and the 2019 Italian Open semifinals.
Next up in the second round, Tsitsipas, who became the first Greek to enter the ATP top-10, is to play Hugo Dellien of Bolivia, who eliminated India’s Prajnesh Gunneswaran.
The 25-year-old Dellien, world No. 92, proved his talent, although it was his first ever Grand-Slam encounter.
Croatia’s Marin Cilic also kicked off his run at the second Grand Slam event of the year with a 6-3, 7-5, 6-1 win over Thomas Fabbiano of Italy, after two hours and 11 minutes of competition.
Cilic, 11th-seeded at French Open and world No.13, is to play Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov, who defeated Janko Tipsarevic of Serbia 6-3, 6-0, 3-6, 6-7 (4-7), 6-4 in the first round.
Kei Nishikori of Japan, seventh seed, prevailed over French Quentin Halys 6-2, 6-3, 6-4 after a two-hour match.
In other French Open first-round actions Sunday, Norway’s Casper Ruud topped Ernests Gulbis of Latvia, while Alexei Popyrin of Australia and Italy’s Matteo Berrettini also reached the second round after winning over Frenchman Ugo Humbert and Spaniard Pablo Andujar, respectively.
In related news, Canadian Felix Auger-Alissime had to withdraw from the main draw over physical problems, which permitted Alejandro Davidovich of Spain to be a lucky loser.
The 19-year-old Davidovich, a son of a Russian father and Swedish mother, will play Jordan Thompson of Australia, corresponding the first round of the clay-court Grand Slam event.