The Paris Masters got underway at a near-empty Bercy Arena on Monday amid France’s second coronavirus lockdown, with former champion Karen Khachanov being knocked out in the first round.

Russian Khachanov was beaten 6-3, 2-6, 6-2 by Spanish qualifier Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.

Tournament organisers had expected to welcome 1,000 fans a day to the event, but instead had to refund the tickets when French President Emmanuel Macron announced France would reenter lockdown last week.

The prize money on offer has been cut by more than two million euros ($2.33 million) from last year, when Novak Djokovic won the title.

In front of 15,000 vacant seats, the hum of the air conditioning was often the loudest noise on the main court, with even the players only allowed to have two members of their usually large entourage in attendance.

Khachanov, the only former winner in the draw with Djokovic absent, bowed out tamely to bring a disappointing season to a close, with his match moved to a smaller court to avoid play slipping into the early hours of Tuesday.

Croatian Marin Cilic, the 2014 US Open champion, claimed an impressive win over Canadian youngster Felix Auger-Aliassime, edging through to the second round 6-0, 3-6, 6-3.

“I was not finding my best form in this season, last...

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