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Baldi flies flag for Italy in men’s qualifying

This content was published 3 years ago. It may refer to a past edition of the Internazionali d’Italia.

Filippo Baldi dropped just four games as he knocked out No. 9 seed Martin Klizan in the first round of qualifying at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia.

The world No. 158, who is bidding to make his second appearance in the main draw at the Foro Italico after having advanced through qualifying in 2018, will now face No. 7 seed Taylor Fritz, who defeated fellow Italian wildcard Jacopo Berrettini in straight sets in his first round qualifying match.

Top seed Dusan Lajovic came through an epic three set battle against Aljaz Bedene on Court 1. The Monte Carlo finalist needed two hours and 46 minutes to record a 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 6-1 victory over the Slovenian and book his place in the second round of qualifying, where he will play Britain’s Dan Evans who upset No. 10 seed Robin Haase 6-2 6-4 also on Court 1.

Evans will be joined in the final round of qualifying by his compatriot Cameron Norrie whose reward for defeating Germany’s Peter Gojowczyk 6-7(5) 7-5 6-3 is a meeting with Chile’s Nicolas Jarry, a 7-6(4) 6-2 winner over Marius Copil.

Hubert Hurkacz was the highest ranked seed to fall on the opening day at the Italian Open. The No. 4 seed made a 6-3 1-6 6-4 exit at the hands of rising star Miomir Kecmanovic, whose next opponent will be another youngster in Casper Ruud, who defeated home hope Lorenzo Musetti for the loss of just five games. Riccardo Balzerani, the only other Italian in the men’s draw, lost 6-1 6-4 to Bernard Tomic, who will play Albert Ramos-Vinolas on Sunday.

Former Roland Garros quarter-finalist Ramos-Vinolas emerged victorious in the battle of the Spaniards after fighting back from a set down to defeat countryman Jaume Munar 6-7(2) 6-3 7-6(4).

Other first round winners were No 2 seed Benoit Paire, No. 5 seed Damir Dzumhur, No. 8 seed Reilly Opelka and No. 11 seed Yoshihito Nishioka.

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