Daniil Medvedev notched his maiden clay-court win of 2022 with a quickfire 6-2, 6-2, 6-2 win over Facundo Bagnis at Roland Garros on Tuesday.
It was a comfortable first-round victory for the second seed in Paris as he attempts to settle on the clay this year after missing the bulk of the European spring schedule on the surface due to a hernia procedure.
Although an immediate exchange of breaks on Court Suzanne Lenglen suggested a potentially intriguing encounter, it proved to be smooth sailing for 26-year-old Medvedev against the World No. 103 Bagnis. The Argentine appeared to be struggling physically but Medvedev will nonetheless be pleased with the clinical nature of his performance. He struck 35 winners and broke the Bagnis serve eight times in a routine one-hour, 38-minute win.
Medvedev had not won a match at Roland Garros in four attempts prior to his 2021 quarter-final run, which included victories over Reilly Opelka and Cristian Garin before ending with defeat to eventual finalist Stefanos Tsitsipas.
He has had little time to prepare for this year’s campaign at the clay-court Grand Slam. Medvedev only returned to the Tour a week ago at the Gonet Geneva Open, where he suffered an opening-round loss to Richard Gasquet. The World No. 2 will be pleased to have another match under his belt as he seeks to maintain his excellent recent record at major championships. He has reached the final at three of the past six Grand Slams and picked up his first Slam title at the 2021 US Open.
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Medvedev has extra motivation for a strong run in Paris. Should he reach the final, he will return to No. 1 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings, although not until 13 June, a week after the tournament ends, when ranking points from last year’s edition of Roland Garros drop.
His next assignment in Paris is a second-round meeting with Laslo Djere, after the Serbian completed a 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 win over Ricardas Berankis.
Djere is an experienced clay-courter who holds a 1-0 ATP Head2Head series record over Medvedev. The 26-year-old has reached the third round at Roland Garros twice and is a two-time titlist on clay, having triumphed in Rio de Janeiro in 2019 and Sardinia in 2020.
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