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Fritz downs Baldi

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Taylor Fritz put an end to Filippo Baldi’s hopes of qualifying for his home tournament when he defeated the Italian wildcard 6-4 6-3 on Sunday at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia.

Baldi had looked impressive when easing past Martin Klizan 6-3 6-1 in the first round of qualifying on Saturday but couldn’t live with the American’s booming serve and aggressive groundstrokes in the second, falling to a straight sets defeat in 76 minutes. Fritz will face Argentina’s Guido Pella in the first round of the main draw with No. 6 seed Kei Nishikori awaiting the winner in the second.

Cameron Norrie was one of two British players to advance through qualifying, saving two match points on his way to a 6-3 4-6 7-6(6) triumph over Chile’s Nicolas Jarry. The No. 3 seed was 4-6 down in the third set tiebreak but won the final four points of the match to clinch victory.

There was an impressive win for world No. 81 Dan Evans who upset Monte Carlo finalist and top seed Dusan Lajovic 7-5 6-3 to reach the main draw here for the second time. The 28-year-old Briton’s victory over the world No. 24 marked his career-best win on clay.

Evans has been drawn to play fellow qualifier Casper Ruud, who ousted Miomir Kecmanovic for the loss of just three games, in the first round.

No. 2 seed Benoit Paire emerged victorious from his three-set clash against 21-year-old Reilly Opelka to set up a first round encounter against Radu Albot, while there was also a three-set win for Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka over No. 5 seed Damir Dzumhur.

Lefthander Albert Ramos-Vinolas, a former Roland Garros quarter-finalist, called on his clay court experience to defeat Australia’s Bernard Tomic in two tight sets 7-6(4) 7-5 and qualify for the main draw.

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