Tiafoe tremendous in Buenos Aires opener
Frances Tiafoe is not known for his clay-court prowess. But the American looked plenty comfortable on the surface Tuesday in Buenos Aires.
The eighth seed defeated Argentine Facundo Bagnis 6-1, 6-3 with an aggressive, focussed performance to reach the second round of the Argentina Open.
"The focus from start to finish is what I'm really happy about. That's something that I'm trying to really incorporate. Obviously I have over the years, but really focusing on it this year," Tiafoe said. "I didn't really give him a chance to breathe. Every game he earned it."
This was Tiafoe's first tour-level win on clay since the 2019 Mutua Madrid Open, where he made the third round. The 23-year-old faced a tough opponent in Bagnis, who advanced to the semi-finals at last week's Cordoba Open. But Tiafoe overpowered the lefty to triumph after 69 minutes.
The World No. 62 will next play Spaniard JaumeMunar, who ousted wild card Facundo Diaz Acosta 7-6(5), 6-3. Munar leads Tiafoe 2-0 in their ATP Head2Head series, with one of those meetings coming at the 2018 Next Gen ATP Finals.
"I've lost to him twice. He beat me on clay in Barcelona a couple of years ago. He beat me in Milan," Tiafoe said. "It's going to be good. I want to beat him."
Fifth seed Albert Ramos-Vinolas, who made the Cordoba final, overcame a difficult challenge against current junior World No. 1 Holger Vitus Nodskov Rune. The Spaniard defeated the 17-year-old wild card 2-6, 6-4, 6-3 after one hour and 57 minutes.
Qualifier Francisco Cerundolo, the older brother of Cordoba champion Juan Manuel Cerundolo, eliminated countryman Guillermo Coria 6-4, 7-5. Cerundolo will next play third seed Benoit Paire.
Juan Manuel was unable to maintain his momentum from last week. Federico Delbonis beat his fellow Argentine 6-4, 7-6(2).
Indians in action:
India’s men’s single Ace SumitNagalwas the man in form as he swept off World No. 100 Joao Sousa in straight sets with a score-line of 6-2, 6-0 to make it to the last 16 of the Buenos Aires Open.
Sousa managed to break Nagal during his second service game in the first set and lead 2-1 in the initial moments of the first set. Though this didn’t deter Nagal and the Indian star came back strongly in the following game to break Sousa’s serve and level the set at 2-2. Post levelling the scores, Nagal went on to win 10 consecutive games to close the match. Nagal has a thrilling match ahead of him as he faces the 2nd seed, Cristian Garín of Chile in the Round of 16.
(The action from the ATP 250 - Argentina Open - Buenos Aires - Day 3 will beLIVE on EUROSPORT and EUROSPORT HD from 21:30 Hrs (09:30 pm IST) onwards on Wednesday, 3rd March 2021)