Tennis: Sitak through to the second round

Artem Sitak during the ASB Classic 2016. Photo / Getty Images
Artem Sitak during the ASB Classic 2016. Photo / Getty Images

It took over two hours, but Artem Sitak is through to the second round of doubles at the French Open.

Sitak teamed with American Nicolas Monroe for the second year in a row in Paris and together they defeated Russian Teymuraz Gabashvili and Argentine Diego Schwartzman in three sets, 4-6 7-6(3) 6-4 in two hours and six minutes.

"It was a good performance because Gabashvili who is in the third round of the singles hit really big forehand and Schwartzman can hit every shot in the book," said Sitak.

The first set went against Sitak and Monroe 4-6 and then there was a real battle in the second as it took until the tiebreak where the Kiwi and American slowly gained ascendency.

Sitak and Munroe made the perfect start to the deciding set with an immediate break of serve to take control with the Kiwi secure at net and hitting some quality passing shots.

They had three match points at 5-3 with Gabashvili and Schwartzman then holding serve from 0-40 down before Monroe served for the match at 5-4.

Sitak and Monroe face a tough second round encounter with 9th seeds Poland's Lukas Kubot and Austrian Alexander Peya which the Kiwi is very wary of. "Tomorrow will be a different match up against doubles specialists but the good thing is they have just started playing together so we might have an edge. But it will come down to execution, who serves better and takes control at the net."

Meanwhile Kiwi Marcus Daniell and American Brian Baker will face 11th seeds Henri Kontinen from Finland and Australian John Peers in their second round match late tonight.

- NZ Herald

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