New York, Sep 4 (IANS) Yet another classy display of strokes marked Swiss tennis great Roger Federer’s three-set win over 66th-ranked Belgian rival Steve Darcis in the second round of the US Open here.
But even as the second-seeded Swiss on Thursday cruised into the third round with an easy win, Britain’s Andy Murray, seeded third, had to fight back from two sets down to remain in the tournament, reports Efe. Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka, seeded fifth, and sixth-seeded Czech Tomas Berdych also booked their places in the third round.
Federer, aiming for his sixth US Open crown and his first one since 2008, rounded up the match 6-1, 6-2, 6-1 in 80 minutes, as Darcis remained thoroughly outclassed by the 14-time Major champion in all facets of the game.
The former world No.1 was in sparkling form, hitting 11 aces, committing only one double fault, and breaking Darcis seven times while only allowing him only one break point opportunity which he failed to convert.
Federer hit an astonishing 46 winners and committed 25 unforced errors to his opponent’s eight and 18 respectively.
Federer will now meet Germany’s Philipp Kohlschreiber, seeded 29th, who defeated Lukas Rosol 7-6 (7), 6-2, 6-2.
Earlier in the day, Murray had to stage a fight-back from two sets down against French Adrian Mannarino, seeded 35th, to claim a hard-fought 5-7, 4-6, 6-1, 6-3, 6-1 win.
Murray’s third round opponent will be Brazil’s Thomaz Belluci (30) who defeated Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka 6-0, 6-3, 6-4.
Meanwhile, Wawrinka locked horns with promising South Korean teenager Hyeon Chung for a little over three hours before claiming the match 7-6 (7), 7-6 (7), 7-6 (8) in straight sets.
The French Open champion did not play his best tennis but won decisive points that helped him reach the third round where he will play Belgian Ruben Bemelmans who beat American Jack Sock 4-6, 4-6, 6-3, 2-1 (retired).
The Czech Berdych cruised into the next round, defeating Austria’s Jurgen Malzer 7-6 (7), 6-1, 6-3 to set up a face-off with Spaniard Guillermo Garcia-Lopez (31), who ousted Frenchman Nicolas Mahut 6-4, 6-2, 6-7 (7), 6-1.
Other seeded players to advance into the third round are Frenchman Richard Gasquet (12), American John Isner (13), and Australian Bernard Tomic (24) who defeated his compatriot and former champion Lleyton Hewitt 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 5-7, 7-5.
In the women’s singles category, Spain’s Garbiñe Muguruza became the latest upset victim, falling 6-7 (4), 7-6 (4), 2-6 in the second round action against Britain’s Johanna Konta to join five other top-10 seeds who have been eliminated in the first week.
World No.97 Konta was the more consistent player during the three-hour, 23-minute match, committing just 34 unforced errors compared to 59 for the ninth-seeded Muguruza.
Both players failed to capitalise on numerous opportunities in their return games, with Konta only converting four of her 19 break-point opportunities but also saving nine of the 11 break points she faced.
The Spaniard, who struck seven aces but won just 35 percent of her second-serve points, said that she was still pleased with her performance and aware of the “very high level of competition”.
The tournament has “lost a lot of (women’s) seeds because there are no easy matches,” the 21-year-old Muguruza said.
Prior to Muguruza’s exit, sixth-seeded Czech Lucie Safarova, seventh-seeded Serbian Ana Ivanovic, eighth-seeded Czech Karolina Pliskova and 10th-seeded Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro were bounced out of the last Grand Slam event of the tennis season in the first round.
Muguruza, who lost in the Wimbledon final earlier this summer to American world No.1 Serena Williams, was unable to live up to the expectations she generated by reaching her first Grand Slam championship match.
“My life hasn’t changed at all. I do the same things. But after that emotional ‘high’ it’s a bit tough to start over again from scratch,” she acknowledged.
Despite her success at the All England Club, Muguruza recently stopped working with Alejo Mancisidor, her coach for the past three years.
In other matches, 20th-seeded Belarusian Victoria Azarenka, a two-time finalist, defeated Belgian Yanina Wickmayer 7-5, 6-4; second-seeded Simona Halep of Romania topped Ukrainian Kateryna Bondarenko 6-3, 6-4; and 22nd-ranked Australian Sam Stosur, the 2011 champion, routed Russian Evgeniya Rodina 6-1, 6-1.
American Jack Sock, the No.28 seed, was forced to retire due to heat exhaustion while leading Belgian Ruben Bemelmans 6-4, 6-4, 3-6, 1-2.