Miami Open: Federer, Djokovic advance
After a year's absence, fifth seeded Roger Federer celebrated his return to the Miami hardcourts with a clinical 6-4, 7-6(4) second round win over towering Ivo Karlovic on Friday.sports Updated: Mar 23, 2014 01:20 IST
After a year's absence, fifth seeded Roger Federer celebrated his return to the Miami hardcourts with a clinical 6-4, 7-6(4) second round win over towering Ivo Karlovic on Friday.
World number two Novak Djokovic, a three-time winner in Miami, launched his bid for a fourth title in impressive fashion, dispatching Frenchman Jeremy Chardy 6-4, 6-3.
A two-time winner at Crandon Park, Federer did not visit Miami last year, taking an extended layoff before starting his season. But he looked quite at home, needing just 74 minutes to slay the 6-foot, 11-inch (2.11m) Croatian in a slugfest that featured just one break of serve.
"I was able to play a very clean match on my service games throughout, make sure I had a lot of first serves in, make sure I stayed aggressive from the baseline," said Federer. "I think it worked really well, hardly any unforced errors.
Defending champion Andy Murray provided a bit of a late night drama, taming Australian Matthew Ebden 3-6, 6-0, 6-1 as the clock approached midnight.
Murray, who split with coach Ivan Lendl earlier in the week, got the contest off to an unsteady start when Ebden broke him at the first opportunity and then held serve to quickly jump in front 3-0 on his way to easily taking the opening set.
After storming through the second set, Murray was broken at the start of the third which sent the Briton into a towel tossing rage as he berated himself. But the sixth seed immediately broke back to get on level terms and raced through the next five games to clinch a convincing victory.
"You do what you do to win a match," said Murray. "It's not always about how you play or how calm you are on the court, it's about winning the tennis match. That's what matters."
In other action, fourth seeded Spaniard David Ferrer and ninth seeded Frenchman Richard Gasquet both had straight sets passages to the next round.
Ferrer, who lost last year's final to Andy Murray, returned to action after sitting out the Masters series event in Indian Wells and showed no hint of rust as he cruised past Gabashvili 6-4, 6-0.