Jozef Kovalik had to dig deep against Daniel Elahi Galan to make a successful start to his Cordoba Open campaign, recording a 6-2, 1-6, 6-3 victory when a key action began draw Monday.
Kovalik came to Cordoba with plenty of movement after reaching a semi-final in Istanbul on the ATP Challenger Tour to start the season. It also arrived with plenty of game play on clay, including a quarter-final run in Antalya.
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Slovakia, no. 128 in the FedEx ATP Rankings, on a trip through the opening set against Galan before Colombia began making its way back. Galan, who was making his first tournament run in Cordoba, grabbed the second set and took a break to lead the third. Kovalik bounced back from the last four games of the game to win after an hour and 45 minutes.
Kovalik will face Marcelo credential player Tomas Barrios Vera in his next game. Chile were blessed in the first round after replacing Guido Pella in the draw after the Argentine withdrew from the tournament due to illness.
Accompanying him in the second round of the Cordoba Open is the fierce card of Nicolas Jarry, who fought through in a grim three-set against Jaume Munar of Spain. Chile came back from a set down to the upper hand 5-7, 7-6 (5), 6-4 after two hours and 43 minutes.
Competing with his first ATP Tour event in over a year, Jarry will face Benoit Paire’s No. 2 seed in his next game.