Milos Raonic finally earned his first victory at the U.S. Open on Tuesday, fighting through a first-round marathon to defeat Santiago Giraldo of Colombia 6-3, 4-6, 3-6, 6-4, 6-4.
The No. 15 seed from Thornhill, Ont., earned his 34th victory of the season in a match that lasted well over three hours.
Raonic did not play at the US Open in 2011 as he recovered from hip surgery.
In 2010 as a qualifier, he was beaten by Australian Carsten Ball in his debut at a major.
Raonic found himself down 2-1, but tied the match with a break in the final game of the fourth set as Giraldo fired wide.
The match finished with a Raonic break of Giraldo on a forehand error from the Colombian.
Raonic had 30 aces, but struggled with 55 unforced errors and conversions on only a third of his dozen break points.
He will play Paul-Henri Mathieu of France for the first time in the second round of the tournament.
Toronto’s Daniel Nestor and partner Max Mirnyi of Belarus are scheduled to play Americans Steve Johnson and Jack Sock later Tuesday in the first round of the men’s double’s tournament.