Schwartzman Cruises In First Match As Top 10 Player
"It's not easy coming after a few very good weeks, but I like to play indoors," Schwartzman said in his on-court interview. "I like to play on these kind of slow, indoor courts. I tried to prepare well last week in Mallorca and then I came here with many days to practise. I think I did everything to play a good match today."
The World No. 9 is pursuing his first indoor title this week in Cologne, his first tournament since reaching his maiden Grand Slam semi-final at Roland Garros. Schwartzman won 47 per cent of his return points and earned three service breaks in his one-hour, 20-minute victory.
"I think everything today was working very good," Schwartzman said. "I had confidence on court and I felt really well."
Schwartzman will next play 2019 Next Gen ATP Finals competitor Alejandro Davidovich Fokina. The Argentine won their only previous ATP Head2Head meeting in straight sets at this year's Australian Open.
"I warmed him up [earlier this week], I know him," Schwartzman said. "He's a really dangerous player. He plays really fast, he has many abilities on court and he's young, so he has the confidence and he's playing good tennis. It's going to be really tough. I have to recover well, but I'm playing really good tennis, so tomorrow it's going to be a very nice match to watch."
Japanese lefty Yoshihito Nishioka won his second-round match against seventh seed Jan-Lennard Struff, defeating the home favourite 2-6, 6-3, 7-6(3). The World No. 56 will try to maintain his momentum against fifth seed Felix Auger-Aliassime, whom he beat in straight sets at Roland Garros just weeks ago. Nishioka leads their ATP Head2Head series 2-0.