PARIS. — World number two Daniil Medvedev was knocked out of Roland Garros in the first round yesterday, losing in five sets to 172nd-ranked Thiago Seyboth Wild.

Seyboth Wild, who came through the qualifiers and had never previously won a Grand Slam match, triumphed 7-6 (7/5), 6-7 (6/8), 2-6, 6-3, 6-4. 

It was Medvedev’s fifth loss in the opening round at Roland Garros in seven appearances. 

“I have watched Daniil play in my junior years. It’s a dream come true to beat these kinds of players on this court,” said the 23-year-old Brazilian who unleashed 69 winners. 

“I was cramping in the second set and couldn’t really serve the way I wanted to but I tried to play my best tennis.” 

Seyboth Wild, without a win on the main tour since February 2022, held his nerve in the conclusion of the four-hour 15-minute match on Court Philippe Chatrier. 

He twice saw breaks retrieved by Medvedev in the final set before he finally backed up a third break with a hold for 5-3. 

Two giant forehands secured victory. He will face either Guido Pella or Quentin Halys for a place in the last 32. 

Medvedev arrived in Paris buoyed by winning his first ever clay court title at the prestigious Italian Open last week for his fifth trophy of 2023. 

Fourth seed Casper Ruud coasted into the second round with a 6-4 6-3 6-2 victory over Swedish qualifier Elias Ymer to kick off his bid for a second straight final in Paris.

The Norwegian fourth seed, who also lost the US Open final last year to Carlos Alcaraz, wrapped up a 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 victory on Suzanne Lenglen. 

Ruud will next face either unpredictable Kazakh Alexander Bublik or Italian qualifier Giulio Zeppieri as he continues his attempt to go one better than 12 months ago when he was thrashed in the final by Rafael Nadal. 

Alexander Zverev made a winning return to Roland Garros with a straight-sets win over Lloyd Harris in the first round, 12 months since suffering a serious ankle injury in the semifinals. 

The German had to retire injured from a dramatic last-four clash with Rafael Nadal last season after twisting his ankle and did not play again in 2022. 

Zverev, who was the third seed last year, is only seeded 22nd this time around after struggling to recapture his best form since returning to the ATP Tour. 

But the former US Open finalist had enough to beat South African Harris 7-6 (8/6), 7-6 (7/0), 6-1. 

“I was obviously very disappointed with how that tournament ended for me (last year),” Zverev said. 

“That’s why I think I appreciate even more when I play in a full stadium and the crowd is behind me. 

“No (not happy with his performance). But I’m happy that I won in three sets. Normally I start with five-set matches so I’m happy to win in three.” 

Zverev will next face Slovakia’s Alex Molcan as he tries to reach the third round for a sixth straight year. 

Italian qualifier Andrea Vavassori saved five match points to knock out Serb 31st seed Miomir Kecmanovic in a five-hour 10-minute. 

Vavassori hit a colossal 106 winners in his 5-7, 2-6, 7-6 (10/8), 7-6 (7/3), 7-6 (11/9) first round win. Ranked 148 in the world, the 28-year-old from Turin is making his Roland Garros debut this year. — AFP

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