Former world No. 18 Benoit Paire admitted he was “happy” with his win over rising Spanish star Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in Sofia.
Paire, now ranked at No. 49 in the world, handed a 6-4 7-5 loss to seventh-seeded Davidovich Fokina in the Sofia first round.
Paire, 32, was playing his first-ever match in Sofia.
“[I am] happy about the win,” Paire said in his on-court interview. “It was not easy. Alejandro is a very good player, so I had to be focused on my game. I had to serve well and do my best and that is what I did and I am very happy and proud of my game today.”
Paire was glad that he managed to stay focused throughout the match and seal a straight-set win.
“I played well in the first game, it was good for my confidence,” Paire added. “The most important thing is to stay on my game and stay focused. I was solid today so I am very happy.”
Paire delivered a good performance
Paire put a lot of pressure on Davidovich Fokina in the opening game of the match and it resulted in him starting the match with a break.
Davidovich Fokina saved four break points in the first game but couldn’t save the fifth.
Paire earned his second break of the match in the fifth game but failed to serve out for the opener in the eighth game.
However, Paire kept his focus as he served out for the first set in the 10th game.
After winning the first set, Paire broke Davidovich Fokina in the third game to take a 2-1 second-set lead.
Davidovich Fokina responded, claiming back-to-back breaks to overturn the deficit and take a 4-2 lead.
Losing serve in back-to-back games didn’t affect Paire, who broke back Davidovich Fokina in the seventh game.
Paire then earned his third break of the set in the 11th game, before realizing his first match point in the 12th game.