Paris, Tuesday @Peoplesport11
Nick Kyrgios has eased injury concerns with a routine straight-sets first-round French Open win over Philipp Kohlschreiber. In an impressive open to his campaign, Australia’s 18th seed plundered 20 aces in a 6-3, 7-6 (7-4), 6-3 victory over the world No.43.
Kyrgios next plays either big-serving South African Kevin Anderson or Tunisian Malek Jaziri on Thursday for a place in the last 32 in Paris for the third straight year. The 22-year-old had arrived at Roland Garros under a fitness cloud, nursing a chronic hip injury as well as a shoulder niggle on his serving arm.
He pulled out of the Rome Masters a fortnight ago before suffering a first-round loss in Lyon last week. The two-time grand slam quarter-finalist is continuing to receive round-the-clock treatment amid locker-room talk that he may require surgery.
Kyrgios insists he merely needs rest and displayed no signs of any discomfort in seeing off Kohlschreiber – a vastly experienced campaigner and regular second-week challenger at the majors – in one hour and 51 minutes.
He gained the only break of the opening set in the sixth game, closed out the second set in a tiebreaker with his 14th ace and apart from one colourful exchange with chair umpire Jake Garner during a changeover was generally in cruise control throughout the match. Grand slam champion Samantha Stosur has hinted that tennis stars may try to boycott Margaret Court Arena at next year’s Australian Open. – AFP