Wobbly Nadal survives Stepanek scare

Wobbly Nadal survives Stepanek scare

Top seed Rafael Nadal survived a scare from Radek Stepanek before winning his BNP Paribas Open second round match in three tight sets at Indian Wells on Saturday.

The Spaniard, in his first match as defending champion, was stretched to the limit before prevailing 2-6, 6-4, 7-5 in a night match that lasted two hours, 24 minutes in the California desert.

Earlier, Briton Andy Murray recorded his 300th hardcourt victory when he beat Stepanek's compatriot Lukas Rosol in three sets. Fifth seed Murray recovered from a slow start to beat his Czech opponent 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 as the top seeds took to the courts for the first time after receiving first round byes.

Seventh seed Federer dominated the first set but was taken to a tie-break in the second before prevailing 6-2, 7-6 (7-5) against French qualifier Paul-Henri Mathieu, while Swiss compatriot and Australian Open champion Stanislas Wawrinka clinched a 6-3, 7-5 win over Croatia's Ivo Karlovic.

Australian Lleyton Hewitt failed to notch his 600th career beaten by South African Kevin Anderson 7-6 (7-5), 6-4.

There was high drama in another match as Colombian Alejandro Falla saved a match point at 5-2 down in the third set to beat Polish 18th seed Jerzy Janowicz 6-3, 2-6, 7-6 (7-5). On the women's side, top seed Li Na beat Chinese compatriot Zheng Jie 6-1, 7-5. Defending champion Maria Sharapova made short work of her first match, beating German Julia Goerges 6-1, 6-4. Meanwhile, Fifth seeds Sania Mirza and Cara Black reached the quarterfinals in the doubles event following a straight sets victory over Raquel Kops-Jones and Abigail Spears. The Indo-Zimbabwean pair beat the unseeded American combo 6-3, 6-4.