The British no. 1 kept his nerve at crucial moments to defeat his South Korean opponent 7-5, 7-5 in an hour and 49 minutes and now meets heavy-serving American John Isner.
Beaten by Australian Alex De Minaur in the quarterfinals of the last Barcelona Open, Norrie quickly fell 3-0 to Kwon in the first set after losing his opening service game.
The Brit then fought back from a 4-1 deficit, breaking Kwon in game seven before leveling at 4-4 and saving two more break points on serve to level it at 5-5.
World No. 11 Norrie, making his debut on clay in Madrid, took control in the next game, breaking Kwon on serve and serving to win the opener in just under an hour.
But 24-year-old Kwon, world No. 73, refused to roll over in the second set.
Both players traded breaks of serve from 3-3 and after Norrie Kwon broke for the fourth time in the match to take a 6-5 lead, he made no mistake on his own serve and sealed a hard-fought victory with his third match point.
https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/tennis/cameron-norrie-south-korean-british-madrid-alex-de-minaur-b2070036.html Cameron Norrie advances to second round of Madrid Open after defeating Soonwoo Kwon