The fifth seed, No. 14 in the FedEx ATP Rankings, broke the Frenchman’s serve twice and won 80 per cent (40/50) of his first-service points to advance at the new ATP 250 grass-court event in Spain. The 22-year-old will play Tennys Sandgren next after the American overcame Spaniard Jaume Munar 7-6(3), 7-5.
World No. 29 Karen Khachanov fought past French qualifier Lucas Pouille 7-6(7), 3-6, 6-4 in two hours and 17 minutes. The Russian hit 13 aces and won 42 per cent (18/43) of points on Pouille’s second serve to set up a clash with Feliciano Lopez in the second round.
Lopez, who has won four of his seven ATP Tour titles on grass, defeated fellow Spaniard Nicola Kuhn 6-1, 7-6(4). The World No. 90 won 84 per cent (32/38) of his first-service points and broke Kuhn three times. The 39-year-old will be aiming to record his 500th career win against Khachanov.
Frenchman Corentin Moutet also advanced as he beat Lloyd Harris 6-4, 6-2 in 88 minutes. The World No. 85 did not face a break point against the South African and will meet top-seeded Russian Daniil Medvedev in the second round.
Italian Stefano Travaglia defeated Guido Pella 7-5, 7-6(4), and Slovakian qualifier Lukas Klein overcame World No. 41 Dusan Lajovic 6-4, 7-6(2). Former World No. 35 Jiri Vesely beat Salvatore Caruso 7-6(2), 6-2 to also move through on Monday.