James Blake reached the second round of a Grand Slam event for the first time this year, beating Lukas Lacko 7-5, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 at the U.S. Open on Monday.

The 32-year-old American needed a wild card to make his 12th appearance at the Open after his ranking fell out of the top 100. He hadn't lost in the first round at Flushing Meadows since his debut in 1999.

Blake, who has twice made the quarterfinals at the Open, won the first two sets before a rain delay of more than two hours. The 54th-ranked Lacko, from Slovakia, has lost in the first round of all three appearances at the year's last major tournament.