ATP

Sinner and Cilic suffer early Paris Masters exits as Fritz progresses

By Sports Desk October 31, 2022

Jannik Sinner and Marin Cilic were the two most notable first-round losers at the Paris Masters, where Taylor Fritz kept his slim ATP Finals hopes alive on Monday.

World number 12 Sinner, the 11th seed in the French capital this week, suffered a straight-sets loss to Marc-Andrea Huesler, as did 15th favourite Cilic against Lorenzo Musetti.

Ninth seed Fritz downed Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 7-5 6-2, with Cameron Norrie and Frances Tiafoe also recording straight-sets victories against Miomir Kecmanovic and Lorenzo Sonego respectively.

Victory for Fritz kept the American in the hunt for qualifying for November's ATP Finals in Turin for the first time, needing to reach the final in Paris to overtake Felix Auger-Aliassime or Andrey Rublev.

"Right now I'm just focused on kind of playing myself into the tournament," said Fritz. "I feel like any time this year that I've won a couple of matches in a tournament, then I've done well.

"So I'll just try to focus on these early rounds. Turin is still in the picture, obviously, but there's not much else I really could have done.

"Felix has played really, really well, so he deserves it, but I am going to try to steal his spot this week for sure."

Home favourite Gilles Simon awaits Fritz in the second round at the ATP 1000 event after defeating Andy Murray 4-6 7-5 6-3.

Alexander Bublik and Mikael Ymer played out another three-set battle, with the former triumphing 6-1 6-7 (2-7) 6-4.

Richard Gasquet, Yoshihito Nishioka, Karen Khachanov, Maxime Cressy, Nikoloz Basilashvili and John Isner were the other first-round winners on the opening day in France.

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