Tsonga edges past Benneteau
Paris - Home favorite Jo-Wilfried Tsonga overcame compatriot Julien Benneteau 6-2, 4-6, 7-6 (2) on Tuesday to reach the third round of the Paris Masters.
The 2008 champion needed nearly two and half hours to get past Benneteau and was forced into a final-set tiebreaker after failing to serve out the match.
Benneteau only converting three of his 11 break points against the hard-serving Tsonga, who hit a total of 15 aces - five in each set.
Fifth-seeded Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic also reached the third round after beating Andreas Seppi 7-6 (8), 6-2.
After a closely fought first set, Berdych took firm control of the match by jumping out to a 4-0 lead in the second.
Three other Frenchmen won in the first round, all against Spaniards. Jeremy Chardy cruised past Guillermo Garcia Lopez 6-0, 6-3, Paul-Henri Mathieu beat Roberto Bautista-Agut 6-4, 7-5, and Michael Llodra defeated Daniel Gimeno-Traver 7-5, 6-3.
However, Benoit Paire lost 7-6 (2), 6-2 to 15th-seeded Kei Nishikori of Japan in the second round.
Earlier, qualifier Jerzy Janowicz of Poland pulled off another upset when he beat 13th-seeded Marin Cilic 7-6 (6), 6-2 to set up a potential third-round match against US Open champion Andy Murray.
Janowicz, who knocked out 19th-seeded Philipp Kohlschreiber in the first round on Monday, did even better against the big-serving Croat and never faced a break point.
It was the 21-year-old Janowicz's first victory against a top-15 player.
Tuesday's other second-round match saw 16th-seeded Stanislas Wawrinka cruise past Carlos Berlocq 6-3, 6-2.
In other first-round action, Grigor Dimitrov beat Jurgen Melzer 7-6 (2), 6-2 and Igor Sijsling defeated Alexandr Dolgopolov 6-4, 6-2, while Sam Querrey of the United States advanced after Fernando Verdasco retired when trailing 6-1, 1-1.
For gorgeous gifts at gorgeous prices, click here for the ultimate Christmas gift guide from Clicks.