Ferrer, Gasquet, Raonic make winning starts; Goffin stunned


Men’s singles seeds David Ferrer, Richard Gasquet, Milos Raonic and Gilles Simon all made winning starts at the Mutua Madrid Open.

Ferrer, the No. 9 seed, came back from a set down to score a 3-6 6-1 6-2 victory against fellow Spaniard Guillermo Garcia-Lopez.  The former broke his opponent’s serve twice each in the second and the third set and relied on a dominating first serve to make an early progress here.

10th seed Richard Gasquet of France survived a close second set to down Spain’s Roberto Carballes Baena, 6-1 7-6. Gasquet put up a dominating all-round show all through as he didn’t offer any break point opportunity on his serve to cruise in an hour and 47 minutes.

Canada’s Milos Raonic, the 11th seed, overcame a tricky first set to register a 7-6 6-1 conquest of Brazilian journeyman Thomaz Bellucci, 7-6 6-1. Known for his big serving, Raonic did live up to his billing, clinching 84 percent points on his first serve to outplay his opponent.

16th-seeded Frenchman Gilles Simon shrugged off a sturdy challenge from veteran Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis, prevailing 6-3 3-6 6-4 in a grueling encounter that lasted 2 hours and 24 minutes. He, next, meets either Spain’s Pablo Carreno Busta or Bulgaria’s Grigor Dimitrov.

12th seed David Goffin, however, crashed out of the tournament following a 7-6 2-6 7-6 loss to qualifier Lucas Pouille. Goffin squandered four match points en route his second career defeat to the same adversary in as many head-to-head meetings.