Cameron Norrie gets first win of 2019 as he beats Benoit Paire in Auckland to boost Australian Open preparations
- Cameron Norrie beat Benoit Paire in straight sets at Auckland’s ASB Classic
- The 23-year-old Briton produced a fine win over the Frenchman in under an hour
- It boosts Norrie’s preparations for the Australian Open after the 6-3, 6-2 victory
Britain’s Cameron Norrie secured his spot in the second round of the ASB Classic in Auckland with a straight-sets victory over Frenchman Benoit Paire.
The 23-year-old saved all four break points faced as he raced to a 6-3, 6-2 win in just under an hour.
Norrie, who also won 79 per cent of his first-serve points, broke his opponent once in the opening set and twice in the second for his first victory of 2019.
Cameron Norrie got his first win of 2019 with a 6-3, 6-2 win at the ASB Classic in Auckland
The Briton overcame Frenchman Benoit Paire with a smart performance in the first round tie
He will now face Portugal’s Joao Sousa in the next round.
Speaking to reporters after the win, Norrie said: ‘He came out and served really well, I was obviously a little bit nervous, the first time playing on that court and it was a bit windy too,’ Norrie said.
‘But I tried to enjoy it. I fought off some break points at the start of the first set and then managed to play a good game to break.
‘I managed to out-tough him in the second and I freed up my forehand to be aggressive, to move the ball around the court, then I was quickly up to the drop shots he was playing, so a clean match I thought.’
Norrie served well, winning 79 per cent of his first-serve points, to wrap up a fine performance
Qualifier Heather Watson made a swift exit from the Hobart International after suffering a first-round defeat by Romania’s Irina-Camelia Begu.
Watson, who fought her way past Australian Isabelle Wallace to claim a place in the main draw, went down 6-1, 6-4.
The Briton lost six games on the trot as the first set slipped away and although she made a better fist of the second, she was unable to drag herself back into the match.
Defeat for Watson will now see her drop outside the top 100 in the rankings and Katie Boulter, who impressed alongside Norrie in the Hopman Cup mixed doubles, will rise to British No 2.
It was frustration for Heather Watson as she exited the Hobart International after round one