Roi Rodriguez outshone his Spanish team-mate today in Belgrade ©Twitter

Spanish paddlers endured a mixed opening day of the International Canoe Federation (ICF) World Cup in Belgrade today.

Roi Rodriguez produced a superb performance in the K1 1000m to progress fastest in 3min 28.628sec.

Roman Anoshkin of Russia was second fastest in 3:29.132 while Aleh Yurenia of Belarus was third quickest in 3:29.180.

But Spain's Olympic gold medallist Marcus Walz only finished fourth quickest as he continued an uncertain start to the season.

He clocked 3:29.632 on the Ada Ciganlija Regatta Course in the Serbian capital, but insisted he will recapture his best form.

“Everyone’s expecting me to win and if I come second then they think that is very bad,” Walz said.

“But I don’t want to think about that, I just want to have fun and enjoy and gain a bit more experience on the water.

“Even before last year’s Olympics I had decided that this year I will take it a bit easier, because last year was such a strong year. 

"I just needed a mental rest this year.”

Ilia Shtokalov paddled well in the C1 1000m semi-finals ©Getty Images
Ilia Shtokalov paddled well in the C1 1000m semi-finals ©Getty Images

A Spanish duo also impressed today in the men's C2 1,000m as Adrián Sieirofa and Sergio Vallejo reached the final in 3:35.724.

Oleg Nutafa and Ilie Sprincean of Moldova also paddled well to qualify second in 3:35.948.

Mikhail Pavlov and Pavel Petrov of Russia were third in 3:36.024.

Ilia Shtokalov of Russia was fastest in the C1 1000m semi-finals.

He clocked 3:54.256 to edge clear of Germany's Sebastian Brendel, 3:55.420, and Maksim Piatrou of Belarus, in 3:55.856.

Alena Nazdrova continued a good day for Belarus with first place qualification in the women's C1 500m class proposed for Olympic inclusion at Tokyo 2020.

Her time of 2:07.400 saw her faster than Virág Balla of Hungary by 2.08 second.

Ma Yanan of China took third place overall, and placed second in the same semi-final as Balla, in 2:09.480.

Finals will begin tomorrow in the Serbian capital.