Milos Raonic of Canada makes a backhand return to Daniel Gimeno-Traver of Spain during their first round match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne

Raonic advances after first round win at Australian Open

MELBOURNE, Australia — Milos Raonic began his Australian Open with a 7-6 (2), 6-1, 4-6, 6-2 defeat of Spain’s Daniel Gimeno-Traver on Tuesday to reach the second round in sweltering temperatures. Raonic, the 11th seed from Thornhill, Ont., was tested for nearly two and a half hours in the demanding heat that hovered just above 40 C.

MELBOURNE, Australia — Milos Raonic began his Australian Open with a 7-6 (2), 6-1, 4-6, 6-2 defeat of Spain’s Daniel Gimeno-Traver on Tuesday to reach the second round in sweltering temperatures.

Raonic, the 11th seed from Thornhill, Ont., was tested for nearly two and a half hours in the demanding heat that hovered just above 40 C.

The heat was even too much for one of the ball kids, who had to leave the court in the middle of the match.

Raonic finally put away the victory on his fifth match point against an opponent ranked 77th in a first-time meeting.

Raonic took the victory with 21 aces, striking 48 winners and breaking on 7-of-20 chances. The 23-year-old was frustrated as he tried to close out the contest but finally got the job done when he broke the Spaniard’s serve.

He’ll join compatriots Eugenie Bouchard, from Montreal, and Vancouver’s Vasek Pospisil, who won their first-round matches on Monday.

Raonic and Gimeno-Traver struggled to adjust to the conditions in the 46-minute opening set.

Raonic emerged 4-4 after three consecutive breaks of serve before finally getting an edge on Gimeno-Traver. As the set wound into the tiebreaker Raonic took command, leading 5-1 on his way to setting up four set points and converting the first with an ace.

Raonic, who reached the fourth round in Melbourne in 2011 and 2013, swept the second set 6-1, but was caught out in the third as Gimeno-Traver got on the scoreboard.

But Raonic re-asserted himself in the fourth, earning a 5-2 lead and reaching his first three set points.

Forehand errors spoiled the quick winning scenario, with Raonic forced to finally go through on his fifth try as Gimeno-Traver sent a backhand return wide down the line.

Canadian qualifier Frank Dancevic of Niagara Falls, Ont., was scheduled to face France’s Benoit Paire in his opening match later Tuesday.

Just Posted

Unemployment rate and EI beneficiaries down in Central Alberta

The unemployment rate for Red Deer region and the number of people… Continue reading

Insurers say Canadian weather getting hotter, wetter and weirder

Average number of days with heavy rain or snow across Canada has been outside norm since spring 2013

Women’s marches underway in Canadian cities, a year after Trump inauguration

Women are gathering in dozens of communities across the country today to… Continue reading

Red Deer councillor balks at city getting stuck with more funding responsibilities

Volunteer Central seeks municipal funding after being cut off by government

WATCH news on the go: Replay Red Deer Jan. 21

Watch news highlights from Red Deer and Central Alberta

Two Canadians, two Americans abducted in Nigeria are freed

Kidnapping for ransom is common in Nigeria, especially on the Kaduna to Abuja highway

WATCH news on the go: Replay Red Deer Jan. 21

Watch news highlights from Red Deer and Central Alberta

Liberals quietly tap experts to write new paternity leave rules

Ideas include creating an entirely new leave benefit similar to one that exists in Quebec

Insurers say Canadian weather getting hotter, wetter and weirder

Average number of days with heavy rain or snow across Canada has been outside norm since spring 2013

Are you ready for some wrestling? WWE’s ‘Raw’ marks 25 years

WWE flagship show is set to mark its 25th anniversary on Monday

VIDEO: Thousands join women’s march events across B.C.

Today marks one year since the first Women’s March on Washington

In photos: Get ready for Western Canadian Championships

Haywood NorAm Western Canadian Championships and Peavey Mart Alberta Cup 5/6 start… Continue reading

WATCH: Red Deer city council debates cost-savings versus quality of life

Majority of councillors decide certain services are worth preserving

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month