Second seed Daniil Medvedev beat Kazakhstan’s Alexander Bublik 6-3 6-3 7-5 in an entertaining clash at the French Open on Monday to finally win his firstmatch at Roland Garros on his fifth attempt.
Clay is Medvedev’s least favourite surface, and despite arriving in Paris having lost in the first round during all four of his previous main draw appearances, the lanky Russian mastered his initial nerves and turned in a dominant display.
Bublik, the world number 37, made the brighter start, breaking Medvedev in his first service game to take a 2-0 lead, but the Russian broke back twice in a row before claiming the opening set.
Medvedev raced into a 4-0 lead in the second before Bublik pulled a break back. The Kazakh ramped up the pressure on Medvedev’s serve further but the Russian saved a break point to extend his lead to 5-2 before serving out the second set.
The third set stayed on serve until Bublik broke to earn a 5-3 lead and a chance to serve for the set. But Bublik crumbled, double faulting twice in succession to hand Medvedev the break back and let him off the hook.
Medvedev capitalised on his opponent’s next service game, breaking Bublik again before serving out the match in style with a hold to love, acknowledging the sparse crowd on Court Philippe Chatrier with a wave of celebration.
Men’s first-round results
Thiago Moura Monteiro (Bra) bt Francisco Cerundolo (Arg) 6-3 6-4 6-3, (31) John Isner (USA) bt Sam Querrey (USA) 7-6 (7-2) 6-3 6-4, Filip Krajinovic (Ser) bt Maximilian Marterer (Ger) 6-4 6-1 7-6 (7-3), Gianluca Mager (Ita) bt Peter Gojowczyk (Ger) 6-2 3-6 6-4 7-5, Steve Johnson (USA) bt Frances Tiafoe (USA) 6-7 (5-7) 3-6 6-4 6-2 6-1, (18) Jannik Sinner (Ita) bt Pierre-Hugues Herbert (Fra) 6-1 4-6 6-7 (4-7) 7-5 6-4, Federico Delbonis (Arg) bt Radu Albot (Mol) 6-1 2-6 6-0 6-1, Cameron Norrie (Brit) bt Bjorn Fratangelo (USA) 7-5 7-6 (7-5) 6-2, (2) Daniil Medvedev (Rus) bt Alexander Bublik (Kaz) 6-3 6-3 7-5, (15) Casper Ruud (Nor) bt Benoit Paire (Fra) 5-7 6-2 6-1 7-6 (7-4), (32) Reilly Opelka (USA) bt Andrej Martin (Svk) 6-3 6-2 6-4.