Top seed Novak Djokovic began his quest for a first Roland Garros crown on Tuesday.
The 2012 and 2014 French Open runner-up beat 87th-ranked Jarkko Nieminen of Finland 6-2, 7-5, 6-2 in two hours and three minutes.
Novak broke twice in the opening set for 6-2. Nieminen took a surprise 5-2 lead in the second set. That brought the best out of Nole, who recovered to win the next nine games. He surged into a 4-0 lead in the third set and sealed the victory on his fifth match point.
The world no.1 won 65 of 87 service points and converted 6 of 13 break point opportunities.
“I was aware of quality and experience of my opponent today, who showed, especially in the second set, why he’s been successful and consistent player on the Tour for so many years,” Djokovic said. “He was a better player for most of the second set. I managed to come back, played some good shots, stayed patient, calm, and overall – it was a very solid performance.”
Match statistics: aces (6-2), double faults (1-0), winners (40-22), unforced errors (31-18), total points won (104-78).
Novak will play against ATP World Tour no.55 Gilles Muller of Luxemburg (H2H 1-0) on Thursday about 16:00 CET. Muller prevailed over Paolo Lorenzi (ITA) in five sets.
The 28-year-old Serbian star has amassed a 36-2 record in 2015 ATP World Tour season, having won titles in Melbourne, Indian Wells, Miami, Monte-Carlo and Rome.
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