MONTREAL (AFP) – South Korea s Chung Hyeon withstood 16 aces to beat 2014 semi-finalist Feliciano Lopez 6-1, 4-6, 7-6 (7/3) on Tuesday in the first round of the ATP Montreal Masters.
After the third set went to the tiebreaker without a break of serve, the 21-year-old South Korean — ranked 56th in the world — built a 4-2 advantage and went on to secure the victory in two hours and 16 minutes.
Chung was just one of the rising talents touted by the ATP as the tour s “NextGen” stars to advance on Tuesday.
Croatian 20-year-old Borna Coric breezed past Russian lucky loser Mikhail Youzhny 6-2, 6-4 to set up a second-round meeting with top-seeded Rafael Nadal.
Coric has won two of three prior encounters with the Spanish great, who won a 10th French Open title this year and can regain the world number one ranking with a run to the semi-finals this week.
American Ernesto Escobedo, 21 years old and ranked 85th in the world, got his chance as a luckly loser when 10th-seeded Czech Tomas Berdych withdrew with a rib injury.
Escobedo stepped in and defeated Georgia s Nikoloz Basilashvili 7-6 (7/4), 6-4.
Berdych, a semi-finalist at Los Cabos in Mexico last week, tweeted his regret at having to withdraw.
“I am sorry I have to apologize (to) all my Montreal fans,” tweeted Berdych, who had played in 12 straight Canadian Masters. “I couldn t play, because of my rib disfunction I need to get well to go to office soon!!”
Tuesday s schedule included two second-round matches, with world number seven Dominic Thiem of Austria closing out the night session on Court Central against Argentina s Diego Schwartzman.
Thiem, seeded third, has a 3-0 career record against Schwartzman, but has lost his opening match in Canada in each of three previous appearances.
In other second-round action, American Jared Donaldson takes on France s Benoit Paire. Donaldson upset 13th-seeded Lucas Pouille of France on Monday.