MONTE, CARLO - Yuichi Sugita bowed out in the opening round of the Monte-Carlo Masters on Tuesday with a 6-3, 6-2 loss to Jan-Lennard Struff of Germany.
World No. 43 Sugita had won the only previous meeting between the pair on tour, but could only convert a single break point while giving up five against the 61st-ranked Struff at Monte Carlo Country Club.
“It was my first match on clay for the season, so I wanted to see what I could do. It was difficult at times. He was putting me under pressure a lot,” Sugita said.
Compatriot Kei Nishikori was set to face Daniil Medvedev of Russia in the second round Wednesday after beating Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic 4-6, 6-2, 6-1 in the opening round.