- ABN Amro World Tennis Tournament
Top seeds Murray and Del Potro cruise in Rotterdam
Andy Murray is through to the second round of the ABN Amro World Tennis Tournament after a 6-3 6-3 win over Edouard Roger-Vasselin in Rotterdam.
Prior to the match, Murray revealed he was pain-free as he continues his recovery from back surgery in September. And it showed, as the British No.1 raced out of the blocks to break twice in an opening set in which he looked very comfortable.
Murray broke early in the second before Roger-Vasselin looked like he might make a fight of it when he went 40-15 up. But the Frenchman failed with his two break points and Murray moved into a 4-1 lead.
The contest remained on serve and Murray won his first match point. He will next face world No.113 Dominic Thiem, who provided the biggest shock of the opening round by beating Jarkko Nieminen - ranked 36 in the world - 6-4 4-6 6-4.
"I served really well for a set and a half, at the end it's natural that you get a bit nervous, I moved well and made him play the extra ball," Murray said. "It got tough at the end and I'm glad I pulled this one off in two sets. I hope to have another good run here this week."
Juan Martin del Potro was made to work slightly harder to beat Gael Monfils, as the top seed came through 7-6(6) 6-3.
Del Potro, the defending champion, had difficulty with his service games in the first set, while Monfils served up five aces to zero.
Monfils was also the first to score a mini-break in the tiebreaker, but then double-faulted and allowed Del Potro to reassert control.
In the second set, the Argentine was dominant, breaking Monfils' serve in the fourth game. The only hint of trouble came in the deciding game, when Monfils took him to two break points. But Del Potro saved both and went on to seal the victory.
Richard Gasquet, the fourth seed, needed three sets to see off wildcard Thiemo de Bakker 6-7(5), 7-6(2), 6-3.
Sixth seed Tommy Haas also needed three to get past Fernando Verdasco. The German lost the first in a tie-break before going on to win a close encounter 6-7(4) 7-6(1) 7-5.
Elsewhere, Nicolas Mahut beat Daniel Brands 7-5 6-3.