Mixed day for Brits in Paris

James Ward, pictured, overcame Radu Albot 6-3 7-5

James Ward, pictured, overcame Radu Albot 6-3 7-5

First published in National Sport News © by

It was a day of mixed fortunes for Britain's men in the opening round of qualifiers for the French Open, with James Ward and Dan Cox enjoying wins while Dan Evans suffered an early exit.

Evans was seeded 22nd in qualifying but was outplayed by world number 181 Gastao Elias, who eased to a 6-3 6-1 victory in just 61 minutes.

The British number two was broken four times by the Portuguese, ranked 51 places below him, in a performance littered with errors.

However, there was better news for Davis Cup team-mate Ward as he overcame Moldova's Radu Albot 6-3 7-5.

The 27-year-old Londoner looked comfortable on his way to taking the opener, but Albot showed greater determination in a topsy-turvy second before Ward eventually wrapped things up with his third break of the set.

Cox, meanwhile, was in ruthless form against Amir Weintraub, dispatching the Israeli 6-2 6-1 in 53 minutes.

The Lincoln-based player broke in game three of the opening set and never looked back, breaking four more times and winning 84 per cent of points on his first serve in a one-sided affair.

Ward will now face American Ryan Harrison in the second qualifying round, while Cox will take on either top-seeded Italian Paolo Lorenzi or Egypt's Mohamed Safwat.

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