ANTWERP, October 19, 2016
Three seeds headlined Wednesday’s action at the European Open, when the tournament’s number three Richard Gasquet opened his Antwerp title bid with a comfortable 6-2, 6-4 win over Inigo Cervantes from Spain. The 30-year-old Frenchman didn’t face a break point, capitalizing on three of his own to advance in one hour and 12 minutes.
In the opening match on Centre Court, fourth seed Pablo Cuevas and Slovak qualifier Jozef Kovalik met for the first time on the ATP World Tour with the better ending for the 30-year-old from Uruguay. Cuevas fired 11 aces, winning 84 per cent of his first service points to secure a 6-4, 7-6 victory in one hour and 26 minutes. He will next take on either US-youngster Taylor Fritz or Diego Schwartzman from Argentina.
Fritz emerged victorious from his first round match, rallying 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 against Belgian wild card Joris De Loore. The 18-year-old from California, who is the youngest player in the top 100 at world number 70 and has earned 14 match wins this year, won 95 of the 188 total points played prevailed in one hour and 52 minutes.
Frenchman Gilles Simon also started his Antwerp campaign with a 6-3, 6-2 first round victory over German qualifier Yannick Maden, who appeared in his first ATP main draw match. The fifth favourite capitalized on five of his six break point chances to advance in 72 minutes. Next up for Simon will Jan-Lennard Struff of Germany.
Day 3 Hightlights: