Top seed Rafael Nadal continued his serene progress at the Australian Open on Wednesday, as he marched into Round 3 with a 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 (4) win over Leonardo Mayer.
After dropping just three games in his first match of the tournament, the Spaniard was made to work a little harder by Mayer in Round 2. But eventually, Nadal had too much class for his opponent and sealed the win and a meeting with Damir Dzumhur in the next round.
Earlier in the day in the men's draw, Marin Cilic also progressed with minimal fuss. In the women's bracket, Caroline Wozniacki and Elina Svitolina, seeded second and fourth, respectively, had to fight back from a set down to progress, with the former producing an incredible effort.
Here are the latest results from Melbourne and a look back at some of the early highlights from another day down under.
(1) Rafael Nadal bt. Leonardo Mayer, 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 (4)
(6) Marin Cilic bt. Joao Sousa, 6-1, 7-5, 6-2
(15) Jo-Wilfried Tsonga bt. Denis Shapovalov, 3-6, 6-3, 1-6, 7-6 (4), 7-5
(2) Caroline Wozniacki bt. Jana Fett, 3-6, 6-2, 7-5
(4) Elina Svitolina bt. Katerina Siniakova, 4-6, 6-2, 6-1
(7) Jelena Ostapenko bt. Ying-Ying Duan, 6-3, 3-6, 6-4
Kateryna Bondarenko bt. Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, 6-2, 6-3
Nadal was imperious in his opening-round win over Victor Estrella Burgos and continued to show sharp form on Wednesday on the Rod Laver Arena.
He broke in the fourth game of the opener, spinning a forehand down the line and consolidating in the next game. From there he was in total control of the set and eventually went on to secure it comfortably.
Here's the moment the Spaniard wrapped up the opener, per Eurosport UK:
The top seed was on it from the off in the second stanza, too, as he broke with a delicious dipping forehand and held serve to move 2-0 up.
Mayer may have crumbled at this point, although the man from Argentina showcased great determination to cling on for the rest of the set. However, he was always playing catchup, and a succession of holds saw Nadal take a two-set lead.
Record's Jose Morgado was enjoying seeing the Spaniard tested:
The final set followed a similar theme, and when Nadal broke to set up a chance to serve for the match, the contest appeared over. However, Mayer dug deep in the next game and was able to secure his first break of the contest to keep his chances alive.
It meant a tiebreak was needed in the third. In it, Nadal produced some stunning shots to open up an early advantage. When the first match point came about, the top seed seized it.
Elsewhere, there were no issues for Cilic as he booked a Round 3 spot; the Croatian dominated the contest with his serve.
In the women's bracket, Wozniacki was made to work hard in her showdown with Fett, as she launched an incredible comeback in the final set to win through.
After the players shared the first two sets, Fett surged into a 5-1 lead in the final stanza, putting her one game away from a huge victory. However, Wozniacki strung together an extraordinary run of six games and saved two match points in the process.
As we can see here, the Dane was mightily relieved when she finally did make it through:
Per Ben Rothenberg of the New York Times, the underdog crumbled after missing out on match point:
Svitolina's comeback wasn't quite so spectacular, as she clicked into gear brilliantly after losing the opening set 6-4. She dropped just three games in the remaining two sets.
The win for the Ukrainian sets up a showdown with her compatriot Marta Kostyuk, who is just 15 years old. When asked about the focus on the youngster, Svitolina said "maybe it means less pressure on me," per the WTA Insider Twitter account.