Milos Raonic had a rough go of it against Gilles Simon, but was able to hang on and win in five sets 4-6, 6-3, 2-6, 6-2, 7-5 Friday at the French Open in Paris.
The 23-year-old from Thornhill, Ont., didn’t make it easy for himself, committing 74 unforced errors against 26 by his French opponent. Raonic also had seven double-faults.
Things got tense late in the fifth set when Simon broke Raonic to tie it 5-5, but Raonic responded by breaking Simon right back and taking the next game for the win.
With the win, Raonic became the first Canadian man in the Open era to reach the round of 16 at Roland Garros. He will next face either Spain’s Marcel Granollers or Martin Klizan of Slovakia.
In women’s singles, Eugenie Bouchard won her third-round match, 7-5, 6-4, against Swedish opponent Johanna Larsson.
The 20-year-old from Westmount, Que., will next face Germany’s Angelique Kerber for a spot in the quarterfinals. Kerber defeated Bouchard in three sets at the U.S. Open last year.
An injury to Toronto native Sharon Fichman’s women’s doubles partner, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, meant the pair lost in a walkover to Jelena Jakovic and Alisa Kleybanova.
Daniel Nestor of Toronto and mixed-doubles partner Kristina Mladenovic defeated Hao-Ching Chan and Max Mirnyl 7-6 (1), 6-4 and moved on to the second round.