Felix Auger-Aliassime stayed in contention for a place at the ATP Finals by beating Italian qualifier Gianluca Mager 4-6, 6-4, 6-1 on Tuesday in the first round of the Paris Masters.
The ninth-seeded Auger-Aliassime hit two double-faults and sent a forehand wide to allow Mager to serve out the first set. But he levelled the match when Mager double-faulted on set point in the second.
Auger-Aliassime then broke Mager twice in the third.
“I had difficulty with my pace at the beginning of the match. I didn’t hit enough first serves so I had a bit of pressure on my second serve,” Auger-Aliassime said. “I bounced back in the second set. I tried to find solutions in returns, changing my positions, varying my returns. And after returning so well, I created occasions and I won the second set and then I finished very well.”
Norrie wins in Paris, stays in running for ATP Finals spot
Qualifying for the ATP Finals would cap a good season for the 21-year-old Canadian, who reached the semifinals at the U.S. Open and the quarterfinals at Wimbledon. He also reached the final at the Murray River Open in Melbourne and the Stuttgart Open in Germany.
Djokovic, Medvedev, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Alexander Zverev, Andrey Rublev and Matteo Berrettini have already qualified for the ATP Finals. Auger-Aliassime, Casper Ruud, Jannik Sinner, Hubert Hurkacz and Cameron Norrie are among the players hoping to join the eight-man tournament.
American players Reilly Opelka, Tommy Paul and Taylor Fritz also advanced to the second round, as did Karen Khachanov of Russia, Carlos Alcaraz of Spain and James Duckworth of Australia.
Opelka, the runner-up in Toronto, hit 19 aces while beating Filip Krajinovic of Serbia 6-3, 7-6 (4), while Fritz defeated Lorenzo Sonego of Italy 3-6, 6-2, 6-3 and Paul beat Jan-Lennard Struff of Germany 6-3, 6-4.