India's Sumit Nagal began his 2021 season with an opening round defeat at the Murray River Open, losing in straight sets to Ricardas Berankis, here on Monday in the run up to the Australian Open.
Nagal, who does not give up easily, suffered a rather tame 2-6 2-6 defeat in the USD 320775 ATP250 event.
The Indian, ranked 139 in the ATP singles chart could convert none of the two break chances he earned while dropped his serve four times in the match against the world number 72 from Lithuania.
It is first competitive event for all the players who have assembled in Melbourne for season's first Grand Slam and have completed quarantine.
Bopanna, who served a hard quarantine, has been paired with Denmark's Frederik Nielsen for the Murray River Open and they will open their campaign against Australian wild card pair of James Duckworth and Marc Polmans.
Bopanna is going into the event without much practice as protocols required him to stay inside his room for 14 straight days. He stepped out only on January 30.
Divij Sharan and Igor Zelenay will clash with Guillermo Duran and Albert Ramos-Vinolas in their opening round.