Tennis

Kei Nishikori defeats Thiago Monteiro in straight sets in Wimbledon first round

AFP-JIJI, Kyodo

Kei Nishikori eased into the second round of Wimbledon on Tuesday beating Brazilian qualifier Thiago Monteiro 6-4, 7-6 (7-3), 6-4.

The 29-year-old eighth seed, a quarterfinalist at Wimbledon last year, never gave Monteiro a hope of an upset, winning in 2 hours, 10 minute on Court 12 at the All England Club.

Nishikori — whose best Grand Slam performance was reaching the 2014 U.S. Open final — will play either experienced Uzbek Denis Istomin or Britain’s Cameron Norrie in the second round.

Nishikori, who reached the French Open quarterfinals last month, started the match aggressively against his 113th-ranked foe.

He held serve throughout the opening set but allowed Monteiro to force his way to a tiebreaker in the second.

The world No. 7 saved a break point in the third before closing out a comfortable win.

“It’s been a while since my last tournament on grass, but I made a good start and played confidently,” Nishikori said.

“I want to play with this kind of rhythm as much as possible. There are a few things I’ll try to fix for my next match.”

On the women’s side, defending champion Angelique reached the second round with a 6-4, 6-3 win over fellow German Tatjana Maria.

Fourth seed Kerber, who defeated Serena Williams to capture her third major, will face lucky loser Lauren Davis of the United States for a place in the last 32.

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