Del Potro eases past Mahut in first round

Juan Martín del Potro has advanced to the second round of the French Open. (AFP pic)

PARIS: Juan Martín del Potro recovered from a poor first set to beat Frenchman Nicolas Mahut 1-6, 6-1, 6-2, 6-4 in the French Open first round on Tuesday.

The former US Open champion, who dropped out injured at the Italian Open earlier this month, had said he would make a last-minute decision on his fitness at Roland Garros.

But the Argentinian fifth seed, a semifinalist in 2009, came through his match against Mahut with relative comfort after his difficult start and broke wildcard Mahut’s serve five times.

Del Potro will take on either his compatriot Leonardo Mayer or French veteran Julien Benneteau in the second round.