Paris: Two-time Grand Slam winner Garbine Muguruza is back to winning ways at the French Open after beating Russia's Svetlana Kuznetsova, another former Roland Garros champion.
Muguruza, who claimed the title in Paris two years ago, advanced to the second round with a 7-6 (0), 6-2 win.
After beating Serena Williams in the 2016 final, Muguruza's title defence was ended in the fourth round last year.
Muguruza next faces French wildcard Fiona Ferro, ranked 257, for a place in the last 32.
Now ranked 43rd, the 32-year-old Kuznetsova was making her 16th consecutive appearance in the main draw in Paris, where she won the title in 2009.
Third-seed Marin Cilic defeated the unseeded Australian James Duckworth in straight sets in rainy conditions to progress through to the second round of the French Open.
“It’s not often we play in the rain, so it was a bit different... the balls were a little bit heavier, a little bit different, but that’s the special thing about the French Open,” Cilic told the Philippe Chatrier court after his win.
The French Open is the only Grand Slam not to have a roofed court.
Cilic, who reached his third major final in Melbourne this year, was pushed to seven games in the second and third sets, winning 6-3 7-5 7-6(4). Duckworth is ranked 1072 in the world.
The Croatian would become only the 11th man in the Open era to reach the final of all four Grand Slams if he progresses through to the last two of this year’s Coupe des Mousquetaires.
Cilic, the Wimbledon and Australian Open runner-up, will face Polish qualifier Herbert Hurckacz for a place in the third round.
Canadian teenager Denis Shapovalov eased to a 7-5, 6-4, 6-2 victory over Australian John Millman in his first ever main-draw French Open match.
The 19-year-old, who lost in Roland Garros qualifying last year but is now the 24th seed, was erratic at times but always had too much power for his opponent.
He will next take on German world number 70 Maximilian Marterer for a place in the last 32.
"The last couple of weeks I've been playing unbelievable on this surface," said Shapovalov.
"For now, every win here is a bonus, but in the future, winning Roland Garros would be a dream come true for me."
Shapovalov fell a break down in each of the first two sets, but his fearsome groundstrokes helped him fight back both times to take control of the match after a rain delay.
The world number 25 quickly moved 3-1 ahead in the third set and wrapped up victory with a rapid service hold to love.
It is the first time Shapovalov has been seeded at a Grand Slam tournament, after his run to the Madrid Masters semi-finals earlier this month saw him become the youngest player to break into the world's top 30 since 2005.
With inputs from agencies
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Updated Date: May 29, 2018 19:05:46 IST