Spanish sensation Carlos Alcaraz began his French Open bid with a straight-set win over Argentina’s Juan Ignacio Londero on the opening day in Paris.
Alcaraz, 19, is among the favourites for the men’s singles title after a stunning start to 2022.
After edging a tight opening set, Alcaraz eventually took command and wrapped up a 6-4 6-2 6-0 victory.
Canadian ninth seed Felix Auger-Aliassime came back from two sets down against qualifier Juan Pablo Varillas.
The 21-year-old survived a huge scare on Court Philippe Chatrier after Peruvian world number 122 Varillas made a dream start on his Grand Slam debut.
Auger-Aliassime eventually prevailed 2-6 2-6 6-1 6-3 6-3 to end his wait for a main-draw victory at Roland Garros.
Germany’s Alexander Zverev also progressed with a straight-set win over Sebastian Ofner.
The third seed, 25, beat Austrian qualifier Ofner 6-2 6-4 6-4 and will play Serb Dusan Lajovic or Argentine Sebastian Baez in round two.
First of many Chatrier wins for Alcaraz?
Despite still being a teenager, Alcaraz has long been tipped as a future Grand Slam champion and many believe this could be the tournament where he achieves that feat.
The Spaniard has dominated the ATP Tour in recent weeks, winning titles in Rio de Janeiro, Miami, Barcelona and – perhaps most significantly – Madrid.
Successive victories over Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Zverev on the clay in the Spanish capital has catapulted him among the favourites to win Roland Garros.
Even though he only appeared in the French Open main draw for the first time last year, there was a buzz around the stadium when he faced lucky loser Londero.
The sixth seed Alcaraz received a rapturous reception as he walked on for his debut on Chatrier, with the French fans seemingly – and understandably on the basis of the recent evidence – believing this would be the first of many appearances on the showcourt.
Little separated the players in the first two sets, but unforced errors from Londero in each allowed Alcaraz to break at crucial moments and proved to be the turning points.
From there, the Spaniard completely dominated and quickly wrapped up the third set to seal a meeting with compatriot Albert Ramos-Vinolas in the second round.
Auger-Aliassime has to work hard for maiden French Open win
Having reached his first major quarter-final at Wimbledon last summer, Auger-Aliassime made the US Open semi-finals before a run to the last eight at the Australian Open in January.
But the Canadian was a clear second best early on against Varillas, 26, and appeared on course for a shock early exit in Paris as the Peruvian broke serve twice in both of the opening two sets.
A junior finalist at Roland Garros, Auger-Aliassime rallied in the third set as the momentum shifted emphatically in his favour, and he also dominated the fourth to level the match.
In a much closer deciding set, it was the world number nine who was able to make the decisive breakthrough in the eighth game, serving out the match to complete a fine comeback and secure his first French Open main draw win at the third attempt.
“A first victory at Roland Garros, but I had to work hard to obtain it,” Auger-Aliassime said.
“It was a good opponent, who played a good match. I’m very satisfied with the way I finished. I needed a bit more space and a bit more time and I have a few tools in my game to help me get that.”
Next for Auger-Aliassime will be Argentine qualifier Camilo Ugo Carabelli, who won a historic final-set tie-break at the French Open to beat Russian Aslan Karatsev.
Fans are seeing a final-set tie-break at the tournament for the first time, with all four Grand Slams agreeing to use a first-to-10 points method at 6-6 in the decider.
Elsewhere in the men’s draw, 2018 and 2019 French Open runner-up Dominic Thiem lost an 11th successive match as the Austrian fell in straight sets to Bolivia’s Hugo Dellien.
Argentine 15th seed Diego Schwartzman beat Russian Andrey Kuznetsov 6-3 1-6 6-4 6-2, while Bulgarian 18th seed Grigor Dimitrov prevailed 6-1 6-1 6-1 against American Marcos Giron.
Russian 21st seed Karen Khachanov beat Portuguese qualifier Nuno Borges 6-3 2-6 6-4 6-4, while American John Isner, seeded 23rd, won 7-6 (7-3) 4-6 7-6 (7-1) 7-6 (8-6) against Frenchman Quentin Halys.
Dutch 26th seed Botic van de Zandschulp also progressed 6-3 3-6 6-3 6-2 against Russian Pavel Kotov.
However, there were defeats for Spain’s 25th seed Alejandro Davidovich Fokina, who was knocked out by Dutchman Tallon Griekspoor 2-6 6-0 6-4 6-3, and American 31st seed Jenson Brooksby, who was beaten 6-1 6-2 6-1 by Uruguayan Pablo Cuevas.