Paire breezes past qualifier at Open Sud de France


Thu, Feb 07, 2013 - Page 18

Eighth-seeded Benoit Paire took just 45 minutes to beat Adrian Menendez-Maceiras of Spain 6-0, 6-2 in the Open Sud de France first round on Tuesday.

The Frenchman had nine aces and did not face a break point, frequently using his powerful forehand to force Menendez-Maceiras to the back of the court.

Paire amused himself in the last game with a half-volley played through his legs, which he followed up with a caressed drop shot. He sealed victory on his third match point when Menendez-Maceiras swatted a forehand wide.

“It was short and fun. I’m very motivated here. I made a good start to the year, but didn’t have much luck at the Australian Open because I came up against Roger [Federer] in the first round,” Paire said.

“Indoors isn’t necessarily my best surface and maybe Menendez was a bit tired after his [qualifying] match yesterday, but I’m happy with my level. Steve Darcis is a very good player and I know it will be a very hard game,” he said.

Paire next plays Darcis of Belgium, who beat Adrian Mannarino of France 6-4, 7-6 (7/0).

In other matches, ninth-seeded Paul-Henri Mathieu of France lost 6-4, 6-4 to Sergiy Stakhovsky of Ukraine, while former champion Gael Monfils beat Ruben Bemelmans of Belgium 7-5, 6-4.

Monfils broke Bemelmans in the 11th game on his fourth break-point opportunity of the set for a 6-5 lead and then served out the set.

There were also first-round victories on Tuesday for Jarkko Nieminen of Finland, Jan Hajek of the Czech Republic and Victor Hanescu of Romania.



Fifth-seeded Martin Klizan of Slovakia came back from a set and a break down to beat Italian lucky-loser Matteo Viola 4-6, 7-6 (8/6), 6-1 on Tuesday in the first round of the Zagreb Indoors.

After winning the first set, Viola led 3-2 in the second when Klizan broke back. Klizan later wasted two set points before claiming the set in a tiebreak.

Croatia’s Ivo Karlovic served 18 aces to upset seventh-seeded Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov in straight sets, 7-6 (7/3), 7-6 (7/3). Dimitrov, who played his first career ATP singles final in Brisbane last month, did not concede a break, but could not find the game to counter the Croat.

“This match was tough,” Dimitrov said. “I have practiced with Ivo quite a few times and I knew what to expect.”

Karlovic had not previously managed a single victory this season.

Grega Zemlja from Slovenia rallied from one set down to beat Serbia’s Ilija Bozoljac 6-7 (5/7), 7-6 (7/4), 6-2. Somdev Devvarman of India also came back from a set and a break down to defeat two-time Zagreb finalist Michael Berrer, who retired because of fatigue when trailing 0-6, 7-6 (8/6), 4-1.

Also, Igor Sijsling of the Netherlands defeated Nikola Mektic of Croatia 6-4, 6-2, Philipp Petzschner of Germany beat Mate Pavic of Croatia 7-5, 6-2, and Lukas Rosol of the Czech Republic beat another Croat, Filip Veger, 6-2, 6-4.