Djokovic forced to dig deep in round two

Sharapova, Serena move ahead in women's event

Djokovic forced to dig deep in round two

Gael Monfils let Novak Djokovic know his honeymoon was over and it was time to get back to work by forcing the world number one to battle for a 6-2, 6-7 (4-7), 7-6 (7-2) second round win at the Rogers Cup on Wednesday.

Playing his first match as a married man, Djokovic, a three-time winner in Canada, needed two hours, 41 minutes and a third set tie-break to subdue the Frenchman and extend his perfect record over the feisty Monfils to 10-0.

“Well, it's a first and last time I hope I'm getting married, and of course it is different circumstances that I'm in,” laughed Djokovic, who was married after claiming his seventh Grand Slam title at Wimbledon.

Since losing in the quarterfinals of the Australian Open, Djokovic had reached at least the semifinals in all seven tournaments since, winning at Indian Wells, Miami, Rome and on the grass at Wimbledon where he reclaimed the top ranking. But Monfils looked determined to end that run breaking Djokovic twice in the opening set and sweeping the last four games for a 1-0 lead.

Monfils continued to press Djokovic in the second and in two consecutive service games was within two points of ending his winless drought against the Serb. 

In the third, the Frenchman again went up a break but Djokovic would immediately break back forcing the set to a tie-break which he easily won.

Briton Andy Murray, twice a winner of the Canadian crown, got his North American hard court campaign off to a much smoother start with a 6-2, 6-2 win over Australian teenager Nick Kyrgios.

Fifth seeded Spaniard David Ferrer was made to fight for his place in the third round battling to a 6-4, 2-6, 6-1 win over American qualifier Michael Russell while 12th seed Gasquet rallied past Croatia’s Ivo Karlovic  5-7, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3.

Order restored

Fourth seed Maria Sharapova rallied for a 4-6, 6-3, 6-1 second-round win over Spain's Garbine Muguruza while Serena Williams destroyed former US Open champion Samantha Stosur as order and power was restored in the women’s competition.

A day after the tournament was left without power and its main attraction when Canada’s Wimbledon finalist Eugenie Bouchard suffered a surprise opening-match loss, the event enjoyed a return to normalcy as the electricity was back on and Sharapova moved onto the third round.

World number one Williams, just days after bagging her fourth title of the year at Stanford, then joined her with a 6-0, 6-2 thrashing of 2011 Flushing Meadows champion Stosur in a touch under an hour.

Sixth seeded German Angelique Kerber, who has four runner-up finishes this season, had no trouble beating Caroline Garcia, easing past the Frenchwoman 6-4, 6-1.

Eleventh seed Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark, the 2010 Canadian champion, thrashed Czech Klara Koukalova 6-1, 6-2 while qualifier Heather Watson provided an early upset when the Briton shocked 10th seed and Australian Open finalist Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia 6-2, 6-7 (3-7), 7-6 (7-5).

Ninth seeded Serb Ana Ivanovic was also sent packing in the second round, losing to American qualifier Coco Vandeweghe in three sets.

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