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  • Almagro, Nishikori win openers

    1/14/13 5:28 AM | Kelli DeMario
    Almagro, Nishikori win openers Sixteenth seed Kei Nishikori is through to the second round at the Australian Open, having ousted veteran Victor Hanescu in four sets. He is joined in round two by 10th seed Nicolas Almagro, who outlasted qualifier Steve Johnson.

    (10) Nicolas Almagro def. (Q) Steve Johnson 7-5, 6-7(4), 6-2, 6-7(8), 6-2

    Tenth seed Nicolas Almagro survived a difficult opener against American qualifier Steve Johnson early Monday. The Spaniard tallied 34 aces and 62 winners en route to victory in three hours and 10 minutes. Almagro completed the first-round effort with seven of 15 break points converted.

    He will take on compatriot Daniel Gimeno-Traver in the next round. Gimeno-Traver rallied to win a five-set match against Poland's Lukasz Kubot in round one.

    (16) Kei Nishikori def. Victor Hanescu 6-7(5), 6-3, 6-1, 6-3

    Sixteenth seed Kei Nishikori is through to the second round after rallying to upend Romanian veteran Victor Hanescu. The 23-year-old struck 46 winners and six aces through two hours and 39 minutes of play. Nishikori ended the day with seven of 16 break points converted.

    “I want to do well, of course,” Nishikori said. “It's going to be tough the next round too, so (I’m trying) to play just one match at a time. And if I can do well, that's good; I feel really comfortable playing here.”

    He is scheduled to face Argentina's Carlos Berlocq in the second round. The veteran won his opening-round match against Belgium's Maxime Authom in four sets, 1-6, 7-6(5), 7-6(4), 6-2.

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