Nadal blasts into third round; easy for Federer

Nadal blasts into third round; easy for Federer

That winning smile: Maria Sharapova is delighted after overpowering Belgium’s Kirsten Flipkens to storm into the third round of the French Open at Roland Garros on Friday. AP

The Spaniard, bidding to regain the title he won four years in succession before his run was snapped 12 months ago, cut a dashing figure in a lime green and blue shirt on the sun-kissed red clay and his play also dazzled for the most part.

Left-handed Zeballos, playing singles here for the first time this year, had no answer to Nadal's superior power and succumbed in one hour 45 minutes on Court Philippe Chatrier.

Nadal's only blemish was losing his serve at 4-2 in the third set but he quickly broke back to book a third-round match against Australia’s Lleyton Hewitt, who defeated Uzbekistan’s Denis Istomin 1-6, 6-3, 6-4, 2-6, 6-2 in his second round match.
Fernando Gonzalez's tilt was brought to a juddering halt when he was destroyed 6-3, 6-4, 6-3 by Ukrainian Alexandr Dolgopolov, who is making his debut in the main draw of a Grand Slam. In another second round match, Serbia's Novak Djokovic eased past Japan's Kei Nishikori 6-1, 6-4, 6-4.

Defending champion Roger Federer took a while to find top gear before motoring to a comfortable 6-4, 6-0, 6-4 victory over German qualifier Julian Reister in the third round.
Local favourite Jo-Wilfried Tsonga beat back pains and a resilient Dutchman to reach the fourth round with a 6-7, 7-6, 6-3, 6-4 win over Thiemo De Bakker.

Last year's finalist Robin Soderling dropped his first set in his French Open campaign before beating Spain's Albert Montanes 6-4, 7-5, 2-6, 6-3 to book his place in the fourth round.

Next in line for Soderling is Croatian 10th seed Marin Cilic who defeated Argentine Leonardo Mayer 6-4, 3-6, 7-5, 6-7 (5), 6-4.

Venus in fourth round
Second seed Venus Williams became the first woman to reach the fourth round when she outplayed Slovakia's Dominika Cibulkova 6-3, 6-4 while Sister Serena charged into the third round with a 6-1, 6-1 pummelling of Germany's Julia Goerges.

Serena, the 2002 champion, whose match was cancelled by rain on Thursday, was simply too strong for the world number 77 on a sunsoaked Court Suzanne Lenglen.

Serena concluded a 55-minute stroll in the park when Goerges sprayed a backhand wide.
Belgium's Justine Henin made a brief cameo appearance on Centre Court to complete a 6-3, 6-3 win over Czech Klara Zakopalova in the second round. The match was interrupted by dusk and rain on Thursday with the four-times champion holding a 3-2 advantage in the second set.

The 22nd-seeded Henin, back from 20 months in retirement, will next face Russian 12th seed Maria Sharapova, who stormed past Belgium’s Kirsten Flipkens 6-3, 6-3.

Paes-Dlouhy advance
India’s Leander Paes and Lukas Dlouhy of the Czech Republic advanced to the doubles second round with a win over Sweden’s Johan Brunstrom and Jean-Julien Rojer of Netherland Antilles.

Defending champions Paes and Dlouhy, seeded third, battled past Brunstrom and Rojer 6-3, 6-7 (6-8), 7-5 in a rain-affected contest on Thursday.
The Indo-Czech pair will next meet the winner of the match between German Philipp Marx/Slovak Igor Zelenay and Swiss Yves Allegro/German Andreas Beck.

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