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Canada's Marino Advances At French Open

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MARINO ADVANCES
AP

(CP) -- Canada's Rebecca Marino opened her French Open main draw with a 6-3, 6-3 victory Sunday over Kateryna Bondarenko of Ukraine.

The 62nd-ranked Vancouver native was making only her second appearance on any court at Roland Garros after losing a qualifying match a year ago.

“I'm very happy winning the match, it's probably my first win apart from juniors at Roland Garros,” said Marino. “I'm really pleased with how the match went today.

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“I don't think there was anything special I did today. I just felt I served really well, and that always helps me. I played pretty confidently.”

But Marino's start in Paris was a solid effort, with the 20-year-old never in troubles against her No. 113-ranked opponent. The match was only Marino's third at any Grand Slam after winning a round at last year's U.S. Open and again in Australia in January.

Marino reached the second round in just 57 minutes, striking four aces to the four double-faults of Bondarenko. The Canadian had 13 unforced errors and broke on four of her nine chances while saving the only break point she faced.

She next faces Spain's Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez, who defeated Israeli Shahar Peer 7-6 (4), 6-1.

Marino earned her first-set break for 5-3 and then served out the set a game later on her way to victory.

“My serve for sure was really working today and my forehand was really good. I had a few really low balls that I didn't think I would put in and made it.”

On a packed-out court adjacent to Marino's, Milos Raonic of Thornhill, Ont., practised with top seed Rafael Nadal as the Spaniard prepared for a first-round meeting with American John Isner.

The big Raonic serve is similar to that of the American and gave Nadal a taste of what he would face from a tall right-hander.

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