28 May 2013

Nadal survives first round, Berdych out

11:26 am on 28 May 2013

Rafael Nadal was given a huge scare as he started his bid for an 8th French Open tennis title in Paris.

The Spaniard made it through against Germany's Daniel Brands who'd never won a main draw match at Roland Garros, but the world number 59 won the opening set and put Nadal through three more tight sets.

Nadal was naturally relieved to make the second round and he credited Brands for playing some unbelievable tennis.

The 18 year old Australian Nick Kyrgios made a spectacular start to his senior grand slam career with a straight-sets win - three tie-breakers - over the Czech veteran Radek Stepanek.

The youngest player in the men's draw defied his age after earning a wildcard spot in the draw after his compatriot John Millman had to withdraw with injury.

Kyrgios won the junior singles title at the Australian Open in January.

Elsewhere wildcard Gael Monfils upset Czech fifth seed Tomas Berdych in a first-round marathon.

The Frenchman, whose career has been recently plagued by a knee injury, prevailed 7-6 6-4 6-7 6-7 7-5 after four hours three minutes.

The result marked a spectacular reverse in fortune for Berdych, who reached the Madrid Masters last four by beating world number one Novak Djokovic in the quarter-finals.