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Rediff.com  » Sports » French Open PHOTOS: Murray and Kyrgios advance; Verdasco stuns Zverev

French Open PHOTOS: Murray and Kyrgios advance; Verdasco stuns Zverev

Last updated on: May 30, 2017 23:09 IST

Images from Day 3 of the French Open matches played at Roland Garros in Paris on Tuesday.

Andy Murray

IMAGE: Andy Murray of Great Britain celebrates winning a point. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Top seed Andy Murray cleared a potentially tricky first round hurdle at the French Open on Tuesday, downing in-form Russian Andrey Kuznetsov 6-4, 4-6, 6-2, 6-0.

After a regulation first set that he won in 45 minutes, the world number one lost his bearings midway through the second, dropping four games in a row to allow his 73rd-ranked opponent to square the match.

The Scot then moved through the gears and breezed the third and fourth sets with the loss of just two games.

Spain's Fernando Verdasco hits a backhand during the first round match against Germany's Alexander Zverev

IMAGE: Fernando Verdasco hits a backhand during the first round match against Alexander Zverev. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Spanish veteran Fernando Verdasco stunned ninth seed Alexander Zverev at Roland Garros on Tuesday, eliminating the in-form German 6-4, 3-6, 6-4, 6-2 in a first round match that was suspended overnight after a long debate between both players and the umpire.

The 33-year-old clay court specialist outmuscled the German when play resumed on Tuesday at one set each, with Zverev having lost momentum from a day earlier when he had grabbed the second set and looked in control.

Germany's Alexander Zverev plays a return during the first round match against Spain's Fernando Verdasco 

IMAGE: Alexander Zverev plays a return during the first round match. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Instead of pushing to play on on Monday evening, Zverev agreed to Verdasco's request to call a halt shortly after 8:30 p.m. local time, a decision that proved disastrous for the German.

The 20-year-old world number 10, who has already won three titles this year including the Italian Open and was seen as an outside bet for the title in Paris, had no answer on Tuesday to Verdasco's punishing ground strokes.

The Spaniard, who has won six of his seven career titles on clay, broke Zverev twice to clinch the third set before the German collapsed in the fourth.

Switzerland's Stan Wawrinka in action during his first round match against Slovakia's Jozef Kovalik

IMAGE: Switzerland's Stan Wawrinka in action during his first round match against Slovakia's Jozef Kovalik. Photograph: Benoit Tessier/Reuters

Third seed Stan Wawrinka's launched his bid for a second French Open title with a slow start on Tuesday, toiling to find his rhythm before ultimately beating Slovak qualifier Jozef Kovalik 6-2, 7-6(6), 6-3.

The 2015 champion struggled to time the ball on an overcast Court Suzanne Lenglen, frequently spraying his trademark backhand drive long or into the net as he looked to keep the points short against 152nd-ranked Kovalik, who was making his Roland Garros debut.

But the Swiss did enough to win the rallies that mattered, extricating himself from a deep hole in the second set tiebreak, taking the last five points after trailing 6-3.

Slovakia's Jozef Kovalik in action during his first round match against Switzerland's Stan Wawrinka

IMAGE: Slovakia's Jozef Kovalik in action during his first round match against Switzerland's Stan Wawrinka. Photograph: Benoit Tessier/Reuters

After connecting well with a backhand to take the final point, a sigh of relief as he approached the net suggested he was glad to put the encounter -- lasting a shade under two hours and in which he made 33 unforced errors -- behind him.

Having had less time than he might have wished to adjust between Geneva, where he took the title on Saturday, and Paris, he took the longer view in upbeat comments after the match.

"It wasn't particularly easy after Geneva... but I feel good," Wawrinka said courtside.

"I hope to go deep (into the tournament) this year."

The Swiss will play Ukraine's Alexandr Dolgopolov in the second round.

Australia's Nick Kyrgios in action during his French Open first round match against Germany's Philipp Kohlschreiber

IMAGE: Australia's Nick Kyrgios in action during his French Open first round match against Germany's Philipp Kohlschreiber. Photograph: Gonzalo Fuentes/Reuters

Australian Nick Kyrgios shrugged off injury concerns and kept his emotions in check to outclass Germany's Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-3, 7-6, 6-3 on Tuesday and book his spot in the second round of the French Open.

The 18th seed, who fired a total of 2 aces, including six in the first set alone, which he raced though in 30 minutes.

A mini-break in the tie break was enough to hand him the second set as Kohlschreiber struggled with the Australian's whipped groundstrokes and repeated audacious dropshots.Kyrgios, notorious for his periodic bad temper and sulks on court, sealed his victory on his first match point.

Argentina's Juan Martin Del Potro plays a backhand shot during his first round match against compatriot Guido Pella

IMAGE: Argentina's Juan Martin Del Potro plays a backhand shot during his first round match against compatriot Guido Pella. Photograph: Julian Finney/Getty Images

Juan Martin del Potro made a successful return to Roland Garros after a five-year absence on Tuesday, setting aside injury concerns to sail through 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 against fellow Argentine Guido Pella.

The 29th seed, whose career has been plagued by injury, only confirmed his participation in this year's French Open on Friday after suffering shoulder and back problems.

Del Potro, who reached the French Open semi-finals in 2009, moved across court six with no apparent signs of discomfort, sending down 13 aces in outclassing qualifier Pella in just under two hours.

Tuesday's match was Del Potro's first on the Paris clay since 2012, when he lost in the quarter-finals to Roger Federer.

Ukraine's Elina Svitolina plays a forehand during her first round match against Kazhakstan's Yaroslava Shvedova

IMAGE: Ukraine's Elina Svitolina plays a forehand during her first round match against Kazhakstan's Yaroslava Shvedova. Photograph: Adam Pretty/Getty Images

In-form Ukrainian Elina Svitolina moved swiftly into the second round of the French Open on Tuesday, easing through a potentially tricky encounter against Yaroslava Shvedova with a 6-4, 6-3 victory.

The fifth seed, one of the pre-tournament favourites after winning the Rome claycourt tournament, was just a cut above her Kazakh opponent, who has reached the quarter-finals here twice.

"I felt good on court played the important points well. Winning a big title just before coming here gave me a lot of confidence and I look forward to my next match," Svitolina said courtside.

She next faces either German Mona Barthel or Bulgarian Tsvetana Pironkova.

Great Britain's Johanna Konta and Taipei's Su-Wei Hsieh walk off court following their first round match

IMAGE: Great Britain's Johanna Konta and Taipei's Su-Wei Hsieh walk off court following their first round match. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Johanna Konta suffered a painful personal Brexit at the French Open on Tuesday, sliding out 1-6, 7-6(2), 6-4 at the hands of Hsieh Su-Wei in the opening round of the clay-court grand slam.

Starting splendid in cerise, 26-year-old seventh seed Konta swept through the first set in 26 minutes, dominating her Taiwanese opponent with heavy serves, heavy groundstrokes and an aggressive front-foot-forward style.

But almost as soon as she had asserted her dominance, the Briton relinquished it, allowing her opponent to settle into a metronomic rhythm of awkward double-fisted groundstrokes off both sides.

Time after time Hsieh spooned clumsily-hit groundstrokes deep into the Philippe Chatrier court, sidespun or sliced, for Konta to swipe her replies wide or long.

And once the Taiwanese had levelled matters in a second-set tiebreak, she had all the momentum, while Konta continued to spray errors all around the arena.

Great Britain's Johanna Konta hits a backhand during the first round match against Taipei's Su-Wei Hsieh

IMAGE: Great Britain's Johanna Konta hits a backhand during the first round match against Taipei's Su-Wei Hsieh. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Fittingly, it was yet another lame forehand into the net that sealed the Briton's fate, as she was left to return to London to prepare for Wimbledon.

Hsieh has a second-round clash to look forward to, and could barely contain her delight.

"Thank you for my team," she giggled, as Konta gathered up her bags and left the court.

"Merci beaucoup for the match today."

Hsieh will next play American Taylor Townsend, who beat Japanese qualifier Miyu Kato 6-4 6-0.

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