Brits Evans & Norrie Clinch Opening Victories
The 10th seed Norrie arrived in the French capital in high spirits after capturing his maiden tour-level title on clay in Lyon on Saturday. After making the short journey north, he showed little sign of fatigure, dispatching French wild card Manuel Guinard 7-5, 6-2, 6-0.
"I came in and it's straight to business," Norrie said. "I usually have some days [of] practice and you're seeing everyone and everyone's saying hi to everyone. It was pretty quick for me. I rocked up, had a quick practice... with Casper and then today I'm playing a match. So it just felt like another match for me, and I don't mind that at all."
The 26-year-old is making his fifth appearance at the second major of the season, with his best result a run to the third round last year. Following his two-hour, 19-minute win, Norrie, currently 11th in the Pepperstone ATP Race To Turin, will next play Jason Kubler after the Australian qualifier downed Denis Kudla 7-6(5), 7-6(2), 7-6(3).
Evans celebrated his 32nd birthday by claiming a first win in Paris on his fifth attempt, defeating Miami semi-finalist Francisco Cerundolo 7-6(3), 6-4, 6-4.
"I played a good match and just happy with the day, really," Evans said. "Waited around quite a bit [because of the rain], so it was a difficult morning, but it's a good afternoon."
The 29th seed has struggled to produce his best level in the French capital in the past, but ensured he would not suffer more disappointment against the Argentine with a consistent display. Evans committed just 27 unforced errors compared to Cerundolo’s 48 to advance after two hours and 45 minutes.