Nishikori eases into third round

The Japanese top seed was making his season debut on clay but was largely untroubled by the world No 85 as he broke early in each set and faced just one break point on his own serve before sealing victory.

Nishikori will face either Portugal’s Joao Sousa or 15th seed Santiago Giraldo in the last 16 on Thursday.

Seventh seed Roberto Bautista Agut and fellow Spaniard Tommy Robredo also booked their places in round three with straight sets victories over Thomaz Belluci and Mikhail Kukushkin respectively.

Second seed Rafael Nadal will begin his quest for a ninth title in Barcelona against Nicolas Almagro, who benefitted from Paolo Lorenzi’s early retirement, on Wednesday.

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