Vina del Mar, Chile (Sports Network) - Last year's runner-up Carlos Berlocq
was an easy first-round winner Tuesday at the $410,000 VTR Open.
The eighth-seeded Berlocq blew past Russian Andrey Kuznetsov 6-2, 6-1 on the
red clay at Club Naval de Campo Las Salinas.
Berlocq lost to Juan Monaco in last year's all-Argentine Vina del Mar
Vina del Mar local and two-time runner-up Nicolas Massu, however, dropped a
6-7 (6-8), 6-3, 6-4 decision to Spain's Albert Montanes on Tuesday.
The 33-year-old Chilean hit 10 double faults, while Montanes reeled off eight
aces and broke Massu's serve four times to advance.
Montanes reached the final here back in 2007.
Also on Tuesday, Frenchman Guillaume Rufin handled Spaniard Ruben Ramirez
Hidalgo 6-3, 6-4; Chilean teenage wild card Christian Garin doused Serbian
qualifier Dusan Lajovic 6-3, 6-4; Horacio Zeballos came back to top qualifier
and fellow Argentine Diego Sebastian Schwartzman 1-6, 6-2, 6-2; and former
world No. 5 and 2011 VTR Open titlist Tommy Robredo drilled fellow Spaniard
Pere Riba 6-2, 6-2. Garin is a 16-year-old making his ATP World Tour debut
this week. Rufin will face the reigning champion Monaco in the round of 16.
The top seeds here are Rafael Nadal and the reigning champion Monaco, who is
Nadal's doubles partner this week. Both players received opening-round singles
byes, but won their opening doubles match Tuesday, 6-3, 6-2, against a duo of
Frantisek Cermak and Lukas Dlouhy.
Nadal is playing his first tennis since last June after being sidelined with
a knee injury. The Spanish great, who owns 11 Grand Slam titles, including a
record seven French Open championships in the Open Era, is appearing in a
South American tournament for the first time since 2005, when he won a title
in Brazil as an 18-year-old.
The former world No. 1 Nadal will open his singles Vina del Mar stay on
Wednesday against qualifier Federico Delbonis, who fought back to best fellow
Argentine Guido Pella, 2-6, 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (7-1), on Day 1.
This week's winner will collect $74,000.
The Sports Network