Cilic untroubled as Fognini battles in Rio
Marin Cilic and Fernando Verdasco moved into the Rio Open second round on a good day for the seeds on Monday.
Cilic, the top seed at the ATP 500 event played on clay in Brazil, cruised past qualifier Carlos Berlocq 6-3 6-2.
The Croatian, playing his first tournament since his runner-up finish at the Australian Open, did not drop serve, breaking three times to win in an hour and 19 minutes.
The eighth-seeded Verdasco was pushed but got past Leonardo Mayer 6-2 3-6 6-3 to make it four wins in as many meetings with the Argentinian.
Fabio Fognini, the 2015 runner-up and fifth seed, survived a huge scare, incredibly coming from a set and 4-0 down to edge Thomaz Bellucci 6-7 (5-7) 7-5 6-2, making it five wins in as many meetings with the Brazilian.
Fognini derrubou a raquete no set point, mas conseguiu continuar o ponto e levar o segundo set.pic.twitter.com/cBYqJ1Nji1— Rio Open (@RioOpenOficial) February 20, 2018
Albert Ramos-Vinolas, the fourth seed, also progressed after overcoming Rogerio Dutra Silva 6-3 3-6 6-4.
Meanwhile, Ecuador Open champion Roberto Carballes Baena retired in his first-round match when trailing Tennys Sandgren 4-6 6-1 4-3.
Runner-up in 2016, Guido Pella made an early exit, beaten by lucky loser Gastao Elias 6-4 5-7 7-5, while Nicolas Jarry beat Guillermo Garcia-Lopez 6-3 7-6 (7-3).