ROME (AP) Grigor Dimitrov overcame a slow start and sweaty hands to beat 45th-ranked Edouard Roger-Vasselin of France 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 in the first round of the Italian Open on Monday.
Dimitrov, a Bulgarian who at No. 14 is the youngest player in the top 20, did not take well to the red-and-white towels at the Foro Italico.
He says "they're new and they don't absorb any sweat ... Three or four times I was about to lose my racket. I asked several times (for all-white towels) but they told me, `We don't have it."'
Dimitrov will next face Ivo Karlovic, who beat Spanish qualifier Pablo Carreno Busta 3-6, 6-3, 7-6 (4).
In women's play, 11th-seeded Ana Ivanovic beat Italian wild card Karin Knapp 6-1, 6-1.