April 25 (Reuters) - Former world number one Novak Djokovic suffered a surprise second-round exit from the Barcelona Open on Wednesday, when the Serb was beaten 6-2 1-6 6-3 by world number 140 Martin Klizan.
Djokovic, who received a bye in the opening round, has not reached the last eight of a tournament since last year’s Wimbledon and has struggled with a long-term elbow injury.
The 30-year-old lost to Austria’s Dominic Thiem in the last-16 of the Monte Carlo Masters last week and looked far from his best in what was his second career appearance in Barcelona.
Klizan claimed the first set in just 32 minutes before Djokovic broke the Slovakian’s serve twice to take the second.
Klizan snatched a crucial break in the eighth game of a tense final set and went on to claim his first career victory over Djokovic in five meetings.
Kei Nishikori retired during his opening match against Spain’s Guillermo Garcia-Lopez after experiencing pain in his right wrist.
The 28-year-old, who lost to Rafa Nadal in the Monte Carlo Masters final on Sunday, withdrew after losing the first set 6-3.
“My expectations grew in Monte Carlo, despite losing to Nadal,” Nishikori told reporters. “However, I started feeling discomfort again during the first set and I did not want to take any risks.”
The Japanese missed last year’s U.S. Open and the Australian Open at the start of 2018 after injuring the same wrist in August.
Second seed Grigor Dimitrov eased past Frenchman Gilles Simon 6-2 6-1 to book a place in the last-16. (Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru Editing by Christian Radnedge)