Tournament favorites Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer were winners on opening day at the US Open. Djokovic worked early against Roberto Carballes Baena before the Serb pulled away with a comfortable 6-4, 6-1, 6-4 win.
“It’s great to be back. I’m grateful that at this stage of my life and career… I’m still competing at a Grand Slam. We sometimes have to remind ourselves of these blessings,” said Djokovic who is 14-0 in the US Open first round. “I’m quite pleased with my performance and looking forward to the next round.
“It’s not the first time for me to be in the second round of a Slam. I know what I need to do to keep going.”
Djokovic, who has won 33 of his last 34 in Slams, now meets US Open debutante Juan Ignacio Londero who beat Sam Querrey in a mild surprise.
Roger Federer broke early against the unheralded 190th-ranked Sumit Nagal, but the Indian stunned the error-prone Swiss roaring back to take the opener. The scare didn’t late long as Federer broke early again in the second but this time he held on.
Serving for the match against the qualifier, Federer had to dig out of a 0-40 hold to close out the 22-year-old.
While Federer had dropped his first set, Stan Wawrinka was on Armstrong putting the finish touches on a tough 6-3, 7-6(4), 4-6, 6-3 win over 18-year-old Jannik Sinner.
Daniel Medvedev continued his summer success rolling past Prajnesh Gunneswaren 6-4, 6-1, 6-2. The 23-year-old Russian has won 15 of his last 17 matches.
“If I want to keep winning, I need to stay fresh,” said Medvedev. “I took a few days off and then came here to New York. I think I’m 100% fit now.”
American big guy Reilly Opelka picked up his first career US Open win beating No. 11 seed Fabio Fognini in four sets. Fognini’s countryman Paolo Lorenzi, a “lucky loser” dropped the first two sets then came back on 16-year-old Zachary Svajda.
Former finalist Kei Nishikori was the first winner on the day. Feliciano upended Taylor Fritz, Grigor Dimitrov and Borna Coric both advanced to a second round meeting.
Tuesday sees the return of 2017 winner Rafael Nadal who battles the man that knocked out Federer last year, John Millman.
Dominic Thiem is back to take on Italian roadrunner Tomas Fabbiano.
Stefanos Tsitsipas meets Andrey Rublev in maybe the best match of the day and Canadians Denis Shapovalov and Felix Auger-Aliassime collide for a a second straight year at the US Open.
Nick Kyrgios opens play against American veteran steve Johnson as is big John Isner.
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