Ruud makes winning start in quest for French Open title

By Reuters
May 29, 2024
Norway's Casper Ruud in action during his first round match against Brazil's Felipe Meligeni Alves.— Reuters/file

PARIS: Two-time French Open finalist Casper Ruud eased past Brazilian qualifier Felipe Alves in straight sets on Tuesday as he launched a renewed bid for a maiden title in Paris.


Fresh from his win in Geneva last week the world number seven and three-time Grand Slam finalist looked confident on the Paris clay, serving close to 90% first serves as he sped past the Brazilian in under two hours.

He will face either Monaco’s Valentin Vacherot or Spaniard Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in the second round “This is one of the biggest tournaments for me and for everyone every year. One of my highlights,” Ruud said.

“I’m always looking forward to it. The last two years have given me so much here in Paris. I hope I can make it another good year.” “I think it’s been a good clay season for me. Madrid and Rome could’ve gone a bit better. It wasn’t what I hoped for. But other results went well. All in all I’m happy.” Ruud, a losing finalist in the previous two editions of the French Open, earned three break points at 3-2 and more on the Brazilian’s next service game before snatching a break on his seventh opportunity to go 5-3 up and bag the first set.

Alves had matched Ruud’s power game for about an hour but gradually the mistakes piled up as Ruud did not give a single break point away in the entire second set. Another early break in the third saw Ruud firmly in the driving seat and the 25-year-old sealed his 6-3 6-4 6-3 win in just under two hours.