In a battle of qualifiers, Aljaz Bedene scored his 4th Masters 1000 win (first after Miami 2014) against Marcel Granollers, beating Spaniard 7-5 7-6. It was a solid match, with mostly baseline points, but rallies were mainly short.
They both forced rival's backhand, and tried to play as many forehands as possible. As we can see, match was close but Bedene played great on his serve, with problems in only one service game (Marcel missed break point in 3rd game of the match).
On the other hand, he won almost twice more points on return, creating 9 break chances, but took Granollers's serve only once. That happened in 12th game of first set, after Spaniard sent a forehand out. In this first part of the match Brit had 15 winners and 7 unforced errors, better than Marcel's 14-11 ratio.
Aljaz lost only 6 points on serve in second set, and missed 7 break points in back to back games in the middle of the set, with Marcel barely escaping to lose serve thanks his first serve in that moments. Tie break was full of errors, with Bedene making mini breaks in 3rd and 11th point, he had one great backhand crosscourt winner and finished the match with smash at the net.
In the end he had solid 30 winners and 32 errors, unmatched to 15-34 on Marcel's side. Leonardo Mayer scored important win over similarly ranked Martin Klizan, after some mediocre results in the second part of the season.
Argentinean created 10 break points in a 6-4 6-3 victory, converting 3 without being broken. In a close first set Klizan served at only 37% but kept his games nicely, being broken only in 3rd. Mayer had troubles in the 10th game when he served for the set, but he saved break point and finished the set.
Argentinian lost only 7 points on serve in second set, and Klizan on the other side faced difficulties in almost every service game, losing serve in 5th and 9th game. In the end, they both had 20 winners and Klizan made 5 unforced errors more, so it all came down to Slovak not being able to win more big points on his serve.
In a crazy match in front of home crowd, Benoit Paire beat Gael Monfils 2-6 7-6 6-4, after almost impossible task as he trailed 6-2 4-0. It was a carnival atmosphere right from the start, and home crowd enjoyed it in the beginning.
Gael won first set 6-2, saving all 3 break points and taking Paire's serve in 1st and 7th game (Monfils held somehow after 16 points second game). Paire of course dictated points, with 12 winners and 18 unforced errors, and the result could have been closer had he managed to break at least once.
Match looked like opened practice for Parisian crowd, as players joked around, in front of indulgent Cedric Mourier as referee. Paire all of a sudden lost interest, with his well known tantrums. He barely moved and sent long almost every shot he could.
Gael in no time gained 4-0 advantage, winning 16 points in a row in that moment, as crowd started to complain and to booed Benoit. From that moment on, we had a different match! Paire somehow reset himself, with a restored focus and a will to show something in front of disappointed home visitors.
He won 3 games in a row, but it looked like Gael would have closed the match, as he needed only two good service games. Benoit thought it differently, as he broke again to level the score at 4-4, and came in front after he won 5 straight games.
Monfils, also known for his poor mental strength, couldn't find the way to resist, as set went to tie break. Benoit lead 6-3 as Gael saved all 3 set points to extend the drama, but Paire won it 9-7 to force a decider. In the second set Paire played great at the net, winning 15 out of 19 points, as both were very poor considering winners and unforced errors (Paire 17-28, Monfils 4-13).
Now it was clear that Paire could have won the match, even after some problems with moving on court. Both served great until crucial 9th game when Benoit broke his friend and finished the match with own serve in next game, for his 3rd Masters 1000 win in 2015.
Grigor Dimitrov had no troubles against coeval and qualifier Pablo Carreno Busta, who improved his Indoor level but still not good enough to beat someone like Bulgarian. It took only 67 minutes for world number 29 to score 6-4 6-1 victory, facing no break points.
In a low-quality first set Grigor broke in the 5th game as both of them had more errors than winners. Number of errors was high in second set as well, but the result wasn't close like in first one, as Pablo completely lost his game.
He only won 9 points on serve, losing his serve 3 times in a row.
First round results : Benoit Paire vs Gael Monfils 2-6 7-6 6-4 (2:03)
Grigor Dimitrov vs [Q]Pablo Carreno Busta 6-4 6-1 (1:07)
Leonardo Mayer vs Martin Klizan 6-4 6-3 (1:18)
[Q]Aljaz Bedene vs [Q]Marcel Granollers 7-5 7-6 (1:52) ALSO READ: ATP PARIS BERCY - Tomic beats Fognini easily, Dolgopolov defeats Vesely and will face Ferrer .