Nadal wins in first match since French Open final

WIMBLEDON, England — Rafael Nadal got his Wimbledon campaign off to a winning start Tuesday, although he needed four sets to do it.

The second-seeded Nadal defeated Francisco Cerundolo of Argentina 6-4, 6-3, 3-6, 6-4 on Centre Court in his first match since winning the French Open earlier this month.

The Spaniard is attempting to win his third consecutive Grand Slam tournament to add to his men’s record 22 major titles.

The three weeks off showed at times, as Nadal amassed 41 unforced errors to go with 23 winners.

At Roland Garros, Nadal needed injections to numb the pain in his bothersome left foot. But he entered Wimbledon optimistic about the foot after receiving new treatment.

Meanwhile, Feliciano Lopez‘s record-equaling Wimbledon appearance ended in the first round as the unseeded Spaniard lost to Botic Van De Zandschulp of the Netherlands 6-2, 6-3, 6-3.

Lopez was playing in his 81st Grand Slam event, equaling Roger Federer‘s all-time record for most Grand Slam men’s singles appearances. He had played in 79 in a row as of this year’s Australian Open, another record for men, but failed to qualify for the French Open to end that streak.

At Wimbledon, Lopez was making his 20th appearance, tying Jimmy Connors for second-most by a man, behind only Federer’s 22 in the Open era. At 40 years, 293 days, Lopez is the oldest man to start the main-draw singles at Wimbledon since Neale Fraser (41 years, 275 days) in 1975.

In other results, Nick Kyrgios outlasted British wild-card entry Paul Jubb in five sets to advance to the second round. The 27-year-old Australian won 3-6, 6-1, 7-5, 6-7 (3), 7-5 against his 219th-ranked opponent.

Three-time Grand Slam semifinalist Grigor Dimitrov retired from his first-round match against American opponent Steve Johnson after having a medical evaluation of his leg. The 18th-seeded Dimitrov won the first set 6-4 and was trailing 5-2 in the second when the 31-year-old Bulgarian stopped playing on No. 2 Court.

No. 15 Reilly Opelka of the United States, No. 19 Alex De Minaur of Australia, No. 29 Jenson Brooksby of the United States and No. 31 Sebastian Baez of Argentina also won.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source link