ANTWERP, October 17, 2016
The ATP World Tour has returned to Antwerp for the first time since 1998 with the inaugural European Open. Appropriately, 24 of the 28 men in the singles field are from Europe, led by number one seed David Goffin and the tournament’s number two David Ferrer of Spain.
The local star had his first practice session on Monday with Pierre-Hugues Herbert, who is building the top doubles pair in Antwerp together with fellow Frenchman Nicolas Mahut. Goffin will open his title bid on Thursday evening, taking on the winner of the “battle of the veterans” between Spaniard Tommy Robredo and Florian Mayer from Germany.
— David Goffin (@David__Goffin) 17. Oktober 2016
The first round got underway with Robin Haase beating Paul-Henri Mathieu of France 6-4, 6-2. The 29-year-old from the Netherlands sent down 12 aces and saved all of the five break points he faced, converting three of his own to advance in 69 minutes.
Haase will next take on Andreas Seppi, who won the first singles main draw match in European Open history, beating the tournament’s number eight Federico Delbonis 7-6, 5-7, 6-3 earlier the day. The 32-year-old Italian withstood 13 aces from Argentine, who clinched the ATP title in Marrakech this year, hitting three of his own to prevail in two hours and 41 minutes.
Inigo Cervantes defeated German qualifier Michael Berrer 6-1, 3-6, 6-1. The world number 80 from Spain fired 13 aces and won 81 per cent of his first service points to finish the topsy-turvy encounter after one hour and 31 minutes. Cervantes will face third seed Richard Gasquet of France in the second round.