Tsitsipas sails through in Dubai, Paire conquers Cilic
On a high after winning his first tournament of the season in Marseille, Stefanos Tsitsipas is through to round two in Dubai.
Stefanos Tsitsipas cruised into the second round of the Dubai Tennis Championships with a defeat of Pablo Carreno Busta and Benoit Paire gained revenge over Marin Cilic on Tuesday.
Tsitsipas claimed his first title of the season by retaining his Open 13 Marseille on Sunday and saw off Carreno Busta 7-6 (7-1) 6-1 two days later.
The second seed put the Spaniard under pressure with rasping returns and was broken just the once to set up a meeting with Alexander Bublik.
Paire saved four match points in a 2-6 7-5 7-6 (7-1) win over 2014 US Open champion Cilic and will face compatriot Richard Gasquet in round two.
Cilic knocked the Frenchman out of the Australian Open in the second round last month, but fell at the first hurdle in the United Arab Emirates.
Paire had lost five consecutive matches against the powerful Croatian, including a five-set battle at Melbourne Park, yet he fended off two match points in the second set and as many in third before bossing a decisive tie-break.
Saving match points for the gram…
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) February 25, 2020
World number 37 Dan Evans claimed the scalp of fourth seed Fabio Fognini, winning 3-6 6-4 7-5 on day two of the tournament.
Fifth seed Roberto Bautista Agut was another to suffer a surpise exit as he went down 7-6 (7-2) 7-5 to Jan-Lennard Struff.
Yasutaka Uchiyama, Filip Krajinovic, Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nikoloz Basilashvili were also first-round winners.