Germany’s Simon Rösner put in an imperious performance to overcome dangerous Frenchman Mathieu Castagnet by a 3-0 margin as he got his Manchester Open off to a winning start.
The World No.8 lost to Castagnet for the only time in seven previous appearances when they last met at the 2019 Canary Wharf Classic, but he looked like he’d never been away from the court as he played some sumptuous squash against Castagnet, who cut an increasingly disconsolate figure.
Rösner will go up against close friend Nicolas Mueller in the next round as he looks to continue his strong start to life pre-pandemic.
“I rate that performance very high because last time we played in London a year and a half ago I actually lost,” said Rösner after his 11-6, 11-4, 11-4 victory.
“It was my revenge really. He is a big warrior and even if you are 2-0 up he can come back and turn around the game, so I just tried to be aware of that, tried to focus throughout the match and I’m happy it worked out the way it did.
“I’ve been working hard at home with a mental coach and I think it paid off today because I normally tend to lose a couple of easy points, which I didn’t today, I kept staying in the rally and didn’t give any points away which made the difference today, I think.
“Every spot is sticky for me no matter who you play. Every match is a new match so I just take it match by match and don’t even look too far ahead. I know Nicky quite well as everybody knows but it’s always good to see who you’re playing next.
“For now I’ll just try to enjoy the evening, rest well and get ready for another 48 hours in the hotel room.”
 Simon Rösner (GER) bt Mathieu Castagnet (FRA) 3-0: 11-6, 11-4, 11-4 (38m)