Qualifier Indian Prajnesh Gunneswaran moved into the second round after beating Benoit Paire of France in straight sets 7-6 (5), 6-4 in the $8,359,455 Indian Wells Masters at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden in Indian Wells, California, United States, on Thursday. The match lasted one hour and 30 minutes.
Benoit Paire struggled with his serve as he registered only 38 per cent of this first service in. He did fire seven aces but also committed six double faults. Prajnesh had a lone ace to his credit and committed four double faults. His first service was 58 per cent in.
The Indian player won 72 per cent points (31/43) on first service and 45 per cent (14/31) on the second service. He saved five out of eight break points and won four of the six break points.
Benoit Paire won 78 per cent points (21/27) on first service and 41 per cent (18/44) on second service. He saved two out of six break points and won three break points out of eight which came his way.
In the first set Prajnesh and Benoit exchanged breaks in the eight and ninth games and were tied six-all. In the initial stage of the tie-breaker Prajnesh led 3-1 but Benoit Paire leveled the score at 5-5 before Prajnesh wrapped up the set by winning at 7-6 (5) in tie-breaker.
In the second set, Prajnesh broke Benoit in the fifth game but the French player broke back Prajnesh in the eight game to level score at 4-4. Prajnesh had three break points in the ninth game as he led 40-15 with Benoit serving. Benoit managed to save two break points before Prajesh broke his opponent in the ninth game. The Indian player retained his service in the 10th game to win the set and match at 6-4.
Prajesnesh will next meet 17th seed Nikoloz Basilashvili of Georgia in the next round. Nikoloz got bye in the first round. (UNI)