Top seed Calvin Hemery progressed to the second round of the GSL Open Nigeria F3 Futures with a 6-1, 6-7 (6), 6-2 win over Fabiano De Paula.
Both players were finalists in the Nigeria Futures 1 and Futures 2 and it was the Franco-Nigerian Hemery, who came out tops on his return to the courts where he was beaten 6-2, 6-4 in the final of the Dayak Championship, as he makes a statement that he still has what it takes to go all the way before he heads to the French Open where he will feature in the qualifiers.
He now remains the only player that will get most of the fan’ support following defeats of Sylvester Emmanuel, Clifford Enosoregbe, Joseph Ubon and Alaafia Ayeni who plays for the USA but has Nigerian roots.
Emmanuel was edged out by Norwegian Viktor Durasovic 6-3, 3-6,6-2 while Enosoregbe failed to hold on to a 6-3 first set win to lose the second and third set 6-3, 6-2 to Egyptian Karim Hossam.
Imeh looked set to upstage the form-book as he raced to a 3-0 lead against sixth-seed, Takanyi Garaganga but he failed to last the distance as he was beaten in the tie break 7-6 (4) before the Zimbabwean close the match with a 6-2 win in the second set.
Ayeni, a wild card beneficiary, fought gallantly against Serbian Pedja Krstin bowing 6-4, 6-4 to the European who won the Nigeria F2 Futures last week.
Tunisian Moez Echargui triumphed in his second straight meeting with Benjamin Lock of Zimbabwe 6-3, 1-6, 6-3 and Aron Peirce of the USA bagged a 6-3, 6-4 over Hugo Largo of Spain; while Sasi Kumar Mukund came out superior in the all-India encounter with Anvit Bendre 6-4, 6-1.
In some of the second round matches scheduled for Wednesday, Hemery will battle Pierce and Hossam faces Haadin Bava of India. Pole David Argazinski will keep a date with Krstin as Garaganga confronts Kunal Anand of india.
Canadian Brayden Schnur, Alessandro Bega of Italy and Christopher Diaz-Figueora of Guatemala have Jose Vidal Azorin of Spain, Adrian Andrzejczuk of Poland and Mukund of India, respectively, standing between them and places in the quarterfinals.