(Reuters) - American Jared Donaldson beat Pablo Cuevas of Uruguay 6-7(7) 6-4 6-4 in the opening round of the Shanghai Masters on Sunday to set up a first time clash with world number one Rafa Nadal.
The 20-year-old hit 14 aces and saved all of his eight break points to beat 31-year-old Cuevas. Donaldson will be joined by France’s 15th-seeded Lucas Pouille, Gilles Simon and Italian Fabio Fognini in the second round.
“You want to play against the best and see how your game stacks up. Playing against someone like Rafa is really special. If I lose, it will allow me to know what was my game is lacking,” Donaldson said after the match.
World number 45 Simon eliminated wild card Wu Yibing with a 6-3 6-4 victory over the Chinese teenager and will take on Japan Open winner David Goffin of Belgium in the round of 32.
Simon’s compatriot Pouille, who won the Stuttgart Open and Hungarian Open earlier this year, eased past Russian Daniil Medvedev 6-4 6-2 and will face Fognini, who came back from a set down to beat Spaniard Fernando Verdasco 2-6 6-4 6-2.
Miami Open semi-finalist Fognini will be looking to add to his Swiss Open triumph in July after losing the St. Petersburg final to Bosnian Damir Dzumhur last month.
Ninth-seeded Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut, Argentinian Juan Martin del Potro, Briton Kyle Edmund and Russian teenager Andrey Rublev will play their first round matches on Monday.
Reporting by Aditi Prakash in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge