Nadal cruises into third round of Australian Open

  • AFP, Melbourne
  • |
  • Updated: Jan 16, 2014 14:59 IST

Spain's Rafael Nadal shouts during his men's singles match against Australia's Thanasi Kokkinakis on day four of the 2014 Australian Open in Melbourne. (AFP Photo)

World number one Rafael Nadal crushed 17-year-old home hope Thanasi Kokkinakis in straight sets to reach the Australian Open third round on Thursday.

The Spaniard, who missed last year's event through injury, was kept on Rod Laver Arena for one hour and 53 minutes before winning 6-2, 6-4, 6-2 against the 570th-ranked Australian.

The top seed broke Kokkinakis's serve five times and saved the three break points against him in a routine victory for a player chasing a 14th Grand Slam title and his second Australian crown after winning in Melbourne in 2009.

Nadal, who only played one set in his opening round after another Australian Bernard Tomic retired injured, smashed 39 winners, seven aces and dominated with his powerful forehand.

"Very glad," said Nadal when asked if he was happy the stadium roof was closed after the tournament's Extreme Heat Policy was enforced when temperatures soared over 40 Celsius (104 Fahrenheit).

"I think I played a great first set. The second set, I was serving well but I made a few mistakes.

"In the third set I played well, especially down the line with a few winners so that was a positive way to end the match."

He next plays either American Jack Sock or French 25th seed Gael Monfils.


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