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French Open PHOTOS: Sharapova, Murray, Berdych storm into second round

Last updated on: May 26, 2015 00:17 IST

Maria Sharapova of Russia

Maria Sharapova of Russia stretches for a forehand. Photograph: Clive Mason/Getty Images

Maria Sharapova was feeling off colour but her game looked in good health as the French Open champion opened her title defence with a 6-2, 6-4 first-round win against Estonia's Kaia Kanepi on Monday.

The second seed, who will next face fellow Russian Vitalia Diatchenko, was barely bothered by a cold in a late-afternoon canter on Court Philippe Chatrier. "I'm getting over it, and hopefully it will pass by soon," Sharapova, who warmed up for Roland Garros by winning the Italian Open, told a news conference.

Sharapova, wearing a sailor shirt and a matching blue skirt, wasted chances to move 4-0 up as Kanepi broke back to trail 3-2, but normal service soon resumed. The double Roland Garros champion won three games in a row to win the opening set having made only four unforced errors.

Andy Murray

Andy Murray of Great Britain celebrates. Photograph: Clive Mason/Getty Images

Andy Murray opened his latest campaign for a first French Open victory with a 6-3, 6-3, 6-1 win over Argentine Facundo Argueello on Monday.

Black-clad and business-like, the world number three's power, poise and new-found confidence on clay proved too much for the 22-year-old lucky loser who was playing only the second grand slam match of his career.

"I was nervous today. It's always like that in the first round of a major tournament. It shows that you care," the Briton said.

Murray is in the same half of the Roland Garros draw as favourite Novak Djokovic and nine-time champion Rafael Nadal and could play World No 8 David Ferrer in the quarter-finals.

But after landing warmup titles on the same surface in Munich and Madrid, the latter with an emphatic win over Nadal, Murray is now unbeaten in 11 matches.

Czech Republic's Tomas Berdych in action Japan's Yoshihito Nishioka during their French Open men's singles first round match at Roland Garros on Monday

Czech Republic's Tomas Berdych in action Japan's Yoshihito Nishioka during their French Open men's singles first round match at Roland Garros on Monday. Photograph: Jason Cairnduff Livepic/Action Images via Reuters

Czech fourth seed Tomas Berdych bulldozed his way into the second round of the French Open by thrashing Japanese qualifier Yoshihito Nishioka 6-0, 7-5, 6-3.

Berdych, who is on a quarter-final collision course with another Japanese in fifth seed Kei Nishikori, had too much in his locker for the world number 146 on court Suzanne Lenglen.

He will next face either compatriot Radek Stepanek or Croatian Ivan Dodig.

Berdych, one of the top four seeds in a Grand Slam for the first time, warmed up for Roland Garros by reaching at least the last eight in the Monte Carlo, Madrid and Rome Masters.

Berdych, a member of the world's top 10 for five years but with only one grand slam final to his name, at Wimbledon in 2010 when he lost to Rafael Nadal, was far too streetwise for Nishioka and was only briefly tested in the second set.

"I'm feeling well. I'm feeling physically, mentally strong, and that's the best possible start that I can have," Berdych told reporters. "Just now be patient, keep working for the two weeks, and try to go as far as I can."

Feliciano Lopez

Feliciano Lopez of Spain plays a forehand. Photograph: Julian Finney/Getty Images

Spain's Feliciano Lopez, the men's 11th seed, became the highest casualty so far, losing 6-3, 7-6(9), 6-3 to Russian Teymuraz Gabashvili.

Annika Beck of Germany

Annika Beck of Germany. Photograph: Scott Barbour/Getty Images

Fourteenth-seeded Pole Agnieszka Radwanska's slump also continued as the former world number two succumbed 6-2, 3-6, 6-1 to Germany's Annika Beck to become the highest women's seed to exit so far.

Alize Cornet of France ackowledges the crowd

Alize Cornet of France ackowledges the crowd. Photograph: Clive Mason/Getty Images

Overcast conditions greeted home favourite Alize Cornet for the start of the action and despite a sparse lunchtime crowd she treated the home fans who had taken their seats to a comeback win against Roberta Vinci.

The French No 1, saddled with the pressure of trying to provide a home winner for the first time since Mary Pierce in 2000, looked on course for a fifth consecutive defeat by Vinci before recovering to win 4-6, 6-4, 6-1.

She was relieved to avoid the same fate as her Fed Cup team mate Caroline Garcia who lost in the first round on Sunday.

Garcia had seemed nervous about playing on Chatrier court but not so Cornet.

"I was really glad that this court was chosen for me today," the 29th seed. "The ambience on this court is amazing.

"I think that's why I could actually come back in this match, because the people were behind me. It's just a great atmosphere in this court."

Women's eighth seed Carla Suarez Navarro underlined her "dark horse" tag with an impressive 6-2, 6-2 win over Monica Niculescu of Romania.

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