TORONTO: Milos Raonic showed that the mighty serve that lifted him to tennis’ upper echelons is still firing after a two-year injury layoff as the Canadian downed Frances Tiafoe 6-7(12) 7-6(4) 6-3 in the first round of his home tournament on Monday. Raonic, a former world number three who returned to the tour in June, crushed his 37th ace on match point in front of an adoring crowd and set up a second-round meeting with Japan’s Toro Daniel. The marathon first set tiebreak ended in controversy when Tiafoe charged forward to hit a winner but touched the net. Because the American made contact with the net outside of the single sticks it was not a violation, and Tiafoe was awarded the point and the set over objections from Raonic and boos from the crowd. Raonic got revenge on his ninth-seeded opponent in the second set breaker, pumping his fist after firing an unreturnable serve to level the match at a set apiece. The 32-year-old then broke early in the third and fended off a break point in the match’s final game in securing the emotional victory, which marked his first appearance on home soil since 2019. Frenchman Gael Monfils put on an impressive display of speed and skill to beat American Christopher Eubanks 7-6(3) 6-7(4) 6-1 and advance to the second round of the Canadian Open earlier in the day.