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Benneteau Ousts Hewitt In Toronto; Tsonga, Cilic Advance

Toronto, Canada

Benneteau© Getty ImagesJulien Benneteau is making his ninth Rogers Cup appearance.

Frenchman Julien Benneteau overcame the rainy conditions on opening day at the Rogers Cup in Toronto, closing out a 6-1, 6-2 win over former World No. 1 Lleyton Hewitt.

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In their first meeting in five years, Benneteau created 16 break point chances and converted four times to snap a three-match losing streak. He drew level with Hewitt at 2-all in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series.

Hewitt, who won his 30th ATP World Tour title last month in Newport, was making his first visit to Toronto since 2006. He last played at this ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament in 2009 in Montreal.

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga followed Benneteau on Stadium court and wrapped up a 7-6(3), 6-1 victory over Edouard Roger-Vasselin in an all-French opener. Tsonga, who recorded his 25th match win of the season, was making his first appearance since the Wimbledon fourth round (l. to Djokovic).

"When you come on the court for the first time again, you want to be good," he said. "You want to see if your practice was good or not. So I was a little bit more [stressed], but in the second set, I played well."

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The 13th-seeded Tsonga, a two-time Rogers Cup semi-finalist, will next meet another countryman, Jeremy Chardy, a former quarter-finalist.

World No. 36 Chardy advanced earlier in the day after beating Federico Delbonis 6-3, 5-7, 6-4 in just under two hours. Also in early action, qualifier Benoit Paire rallied past Colombian Alejandro Falla 6-7(3), 6-4, 6-2 and next meets No. 3 seed Stan Wawrinka.

Marin Cilic survived a first-round test, edging Denis Istomin 6-2, 4-6, 7-5. The Croatian converted five of his 17 break points as he improved to a 4-1 FedEx ATP Head2Head record over Istomin.

Spaniard Feliciano Lopez also advanced, defeating countryman Roberto Bautista Agut, the No. 14 seed, 7-6(7), 6-3.

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