Roger Federer, Serena Williams hurdle first-round French Open rivals

Fitzgerald Cecilio – 4E Sports Reporter

Paris, France (4E Sports) – Fourth seed Roger Federer opened his French Open campaign with a 6-2, 6-4, 6-2 victory over Lukas Lacko in just 84 minutes Sunday.

The 32-year-old Federer fired 40 winners and broke Lacko five times for his first win since the birth of twin boys Leo and Lenny two weeks ago.

“I’m happy I got off to a good start for the tournament here in Paris,” said Federer. “There’s always that little bit of feeling that if you don’t feel well, if the opponent plays great, you could lose early.”

The 2009 champion is competing in his 60th Grand Slam event, which is tied for third all-time behind Fabrice Santoro (70) and Andre Agassi (61).

He is looking to become the fifth man in the Open Era to win multiple majors after turning 30, with Agassi being the last to achieve the feat 13 years ago.

Federer will next face Diego Sebastian Schwartzman, who defeated Gastao Elias, won 6-4, 6-2, 7-5.

Sixth seed Tomas Berdych downed qualifier Peter Polansky, 6-3, 6-4, 6-4, in just under two hours to arrange a second-round clash with Aleksandr Nedovyesov, a 5-7, 6-4, 7-6(4), 6-3 victory over Somdev Devvarman in his Grand Slam debut.

Eighth seed Milos Raonic downd Nick Kyrgios, 6-3, 7-6(1), 6-3 in exactly two hours, while 13th seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga beat Edouard Roger-Vasselin, 7-6(4), 7-5, 6-2.

Other winners were Mikhail Youzhny, Radek Stepanek, Jarkko Nieminen, Jerzy Janowicz, John Isner, Sam Querrey and Dmitry Tursunov.

On the women’s side, No. 1 Serena Williams began her title defense 6-2, 6-1 win over French wild card Alize Lim.

Third seed Agnieszka Radwanska also advanced after defeating Shuai Zhang, 6-3, 6-0, while former champion, Italian Francesca Schiavone, was ousted on Day 1, losing 6-3, 6-3 to Croatia’s Ajla Tomljanovic.

Other winners were Venus Williams, Angelique Kerber, Carla Suarez Navarro, Daniela Hantuchova, Monica Niculescu, Varvara Lepchenko, Yvonne Meusburger, Claire Feuerstein, Anna Schmiedlova, Garbine Muguruza, Johanna Larsson and Bulgarian Tsvetana Pironkova.

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