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  5. French Open 2022: Djokovic enters round two, Nadal records 299th Grand Slam win

French Open 2022: Djokovic enters round two, Nadal records 299th Grand Slam win

World No. 1 and defending champion Novak Djokovic beat Japan's Yoshihito Nishioka 6-3, 6-1, 6-0 to advance to the second round of the French Open at the Roland Garros. 

VS Aravind Written by: VS Aravind New Delhi Published on: May 24, 2022 13:22 IST
Novak Djokovic
Image Source : GETTY IMAGES

Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal entered the second round of the French Open. 

World No. 1 and defending champion Novak Djokovic beat Japan's Yoshihito Nishioka 6-3, 6-1, 6-0 to advance to the second round of the French Open at the Roland Garros. 

Meanwhile, the 13-time French Open champion Rafael Nadal was up and running as he went past Australian Jordan Thompson for a 6-2, 6-2, 6-2 victory in the first round. 

With this win, Nadal recorded his 299th Grand Slam win.

The tennis great from Spain will now face wild card Corentin Moutet in the second round and will now aim to join Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic in the 300-plus club.

Nadal spoke of a chronic foot injury hampering his movement in a third-round defeat to Denis Shapovalov in Rome just 10 days ago, but the Spaniard's movement and all-round game appeared in fine working order in a two-hour, two-minute victory on Court Philippe Chatrier.

Thompson reached the third round at Roland Garros in 2019 but was unable to counter Nadal's brutal groundstrokes in their second tour-level meeting.

Nadal broke Thompson's serve seven times in the match as he found a good rhythm on his familiar rasping forehand throughout. 

It was not a flawless performance from the Spaniard, whose level lapsed in the second set as Thompson battled to his only break of the match for 2-4. However, it was only a minor blip for the 21-time Grand Slam winner, who will be pleased with his first-round outing as he seeks a second major title of the year.

Nadal struck 27 winners to Thompson's 14, a sign of his baseline dominance, but the Spaniard was also effective coming forward. He won 75 percent (12 out of 16) of points at the net as he frequently hurried his opponent into errors.

On the other hand, Djokovic was in complete control against Nishioka and dropped just one game before wrapping up the match. 

"I looked forward to getting out on court," Djokovic said. "I have been feeling well on clay in the past few weeks. I am happy to be back. The memories from last year are fresh in my mind," he added.