Nigeria’s Sylvester Emmanuel went down in straight sets to France’s Jaimee Floyd Angele in the first round on Wednesday, while Joseph Imeh retired injured midway through his match against Sweden’s Simon Yitbarek.
After a dismal first set showing, Emmanuel put up an impressive display in the second, staying solid on his serve against the 6ft 9in Frenchman to ensure a tie-breaker. He, however, just couldn’t nick it, as he bowed out after an hour and 29 minutes.
Meanwhile, Joseph Imeh retired due to injury midway through his match against Sweden’s Simon Yitbarek, with the Swede leading 7-5, 1-0.
The 21-year-old Nigerian had raced to a 4-1 lead in the first set, before Yitbarek found his range to draw level and forge ahead to take the set. He would break in the first game of the second set, before Imeh retired due to injury.
Elsewhere, third seed, Tom Jomby began his quest for a second consecutive title in Abuja with a comfortable 6-1, 6-3 victory over Suraj Prabodh of India.
It was all too easy for the Frenchman, who won the Dayak Tennis Championships in the 2nd leg, as he needed just 50 minutes to wrap up what is now his 6th consecutive match-win at the National Tennis Centre.
Up next for Jomby is Michael Zhu of USA, who defeated Mukhtar Andu in straight sets on Tuesday.
In an earlier match on Court 1, Tombim champion and top seed, Sadio Doumbia also enjoyed success as he beat Prabodh’s countryman, Kunal Anand 6-4, 6-1 in 66 minutes.
Anand was hoping to get past the opening round of a tournament for only the second time this year, but was checked by the Frenchman, who broke in the 10th game of the opening set to clinch it and rolled through the second set with ease to reach the second round.
Doumbia will, on Thursday, take on Tuki Jacobs, who defeated Dominik Palan 6-2, 6-4.
There was no trouble for eight seed, Danylo Kalenichenko and Lagos Open champion, Jack Draper, both easily advancing to the second round.
Kalenichenko, a finalist in last week’s Dayak Championships, dropped only a game in a thoroughly one-sided 6-1, 6-0 drubbing over Sundar Prashanth of India.
Draper, the fifth seed, handed France’s Maxime Mora a double bagel in 44 minutes to set up a second round encounter with Simon Yitbarek. It will be a repeat of their first round encounter at the Dayak Championships last week, which Draper won in straight sets.
In other first round results, Dutchman, Niels Lootsma beat Arvid Nordquist 6-4, 7-5, fourth seed, Fabien Reboul eased past Spain’s Hugo Largo 6-3, 6-0, and Pedro Sorgi ousted Serbian qualifier, Boris Butulija 6-4, 6-3.
Gilbert Soares Junior also advanced to the second round, following a very quick 6-0, 6-1 dismissal of Benin’s Arnaud Sewanou. Elsewhere, Frenchman, Dan Added edged America’s Peter Kobelt 7-6(4), 6-3 to set up a second round showdown with second seed, Arjun Kadhe of India, who breezed past America’s William Bushamuka 6-3, 6-3.