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Past champions Nadal, Federer advance at Indian Wells

AFP  |  Indian Wells (United States) 

World number two raced into the third round of the ATP Indian as made a less speedy but still successful start to his quest for a sixth title.

Nadal, a three-time Indian Wells winner, needed just 72 minutes to get past overmatched 6-1 6-1 on Sunday.

Federer, who is seeking to break out of a tie with top seed for most titles in the desert, looked set for a similarly easy time of it, but had to turn back a second-set challenge from German in a 6-1 7-5 win.

Fourth-seeded Federer said he was relieved not to go to a second-set tiebreaker after falling behind 3-1 to the free-swinging German who is ranked 85th in the world.

The Swiss regained the break and, after saving four break points to make it 4-4, he broke Gojowczyk for a 6-5 lead, the German double-faulting on break point to give Federer a chance to serve it out.

"I struggled a little bit with my serving in that second set and that gave him chances. Because he was serving better he started to swing more freely and then it was tough," Federer said.

"I'm really happy I found a way in that second set." Federer could find himself fighting for a fourth-round berth against fellow Swiss Stan Wawrinka, a three-time Grand Slam champion currently unseeded as he continues his return from Wawrinka took on 29th-seeded Hungarian Marton Fucsovics.

- 'Positive step' -


Nadal, playing his third tournament of a year that started with a crushing loss to Djokovic in final and included an early exit in Acapulco, converted five of his six break chances against Donaldson and never faced a break point himself.

He next faces Diego Schwartzman, who beat Spain's 6-3, 6-1. Nadal is 6-0 against the Argentinian.

"Today was a very positive step for me, and next one going to be against a that we know each other very well, we practiced a lot of times, and we played some tough matches," Nadal said.

"(He is) one of the best talents of the sport today so it's going to be a tough one against Diego."

In other early matches, sixth-seeded of survived a scare in a 6-4 4-6 7-6 (7/4) victory over France's

Mannarino, ranked 52nd in the world, served for the match at 6-5 in the third. He couldn't muster a match point and double-faulted on break point and that was enough of a window for Nishikori.

"I think in the tiebreak I played the best of the match, I was really focused," said Nishikori, who opened 2019 with a title in and then reached the quarter-finals of

Nishikori next faces 67th-ranked of Poland, who defeated France's 6-2 3-6 6-4.

Eighth-seeded American routed Australian 6-0 6-2, the most lopsided win of Isner's career.

He'll play Guido Pella, who won his first title at last week. Pella ended the hopes of another Aussie qualifier, Alex Bolt, 7-6 (7/5) 2-6 6-3.

Tenth-seeded Croatian downed Serbian 6-3 6-4 to book a meeting with 19-year-old Canadian Denis Shapovalov, the 24th seed who beat American 6-3 6-4.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, March 11 2019. 12:55 IST