New Straits Times - - Sport -

be­fore last year’s third round with a wrist in­jury, brushed aside 45th-ranked Benoit Paire 6-1, 6-4, 6-1 in­side two hours.

“I’m very happy to be back here af­ter what hap­pened last year. It’s great to feel the sup­port,” said the 14-time ma­jor cham­pion.

Nadal broke Paire eight times and re­cov­ered from a slight sec­ond-set wob­ble when he dropped serve twice in a row to surge into a round two meet­ing with Dutch­man Robin Haase.

“It’s al­ways at the start, happy for the vic­tory. Was not an easy op­po­nent in the first round, ob­vi­ously. He’s an un­com­fort­able op­po­nent that al­ready he had some good vic­to­ries this year,” added Nadal.

Ti­tle-holder Djokovic strolled through his opener against Mar­cel Gra­nollers of Spain, ad­vanc­ing 6-3, 6-4, 6-2.

With 1999 French Open cham­pion Agassi in the play­ers box for the first time af­ter agree­ing a short-term coach­ing role, Djokovic ex­pe­ri­enced some trou­ble against the World No 77, be­ing bro­ken four times.

“It’s great to have An­dre Agassi as coach and as a men­tor. I will try to learn as much as I can from him,” said Djokovic.

The Serb, seek­ing to be­come the first man in the Open era to

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