Novak Djokovic and Gael Monfils Lead Men on Day Three of Australian Open

Lauren LynchCorrespondent IIJanuary 19, 2011

Tennis Now
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Seeded male players continued to hold serve on Day Three at the Australian Open Wednesday, led by No. 3 Novak Djokovic, who eased past Ivan Dodig 7-5, 6-7(10), 6-0, 6-2, and No. 12 Gael Monfils, who advanced 6-4, 6-3, 1-6, 6-2. 

The first two sets of Djokovic's match each took more than an hour, with Dodig winning the marathon second-set tiebreaker to pull even at 1-1. But the pride of Serbia shut it down from there, throwing the third-set bagel that took just 28 minutes to complete and hitting an impressing 75 percent of first serves (and 64 percent of second) for winners. 

Fernando Verdasco's comeback win over Janko Tipsarevic was the highlight of the morning session Wednesday, and he, Tomas Berdych and Tommy Robredo were soon joined in the third round by a number of ranked players and two upset specialists.

Belgium's Xavier Malisse whipped Spain's Albert Montanes in straight sets, 6-4, 6-0, 6-1, to advance. The 45th-ranked Malisse is through to the third round for the first time since 2003. 

Joining him there are 28th seed Richard Gasquet, 29th seed Viktor Troicki, 17th seed Ivan Ljubicic and 19th seed Stanislas Wawrinka, all who won their matches in three or four sets. 

Having to work a little harder for his spot in the round of 32 was 14th seed Nicolas Almagro of Spain, who found a tiger in the cage in Russia's Igor Andreev. Facing elimination at match point, Almagro rallied to a 7-5, 2-6, 4-6, 7-6(12), 7-5 victory. He won despite Andreev serving up 20 aces in a match that lasted three hours and 54 minutes, including a 65-minute fourth set.

Also knocking off a seeded player to reach the third round was the Netherlands' Robin Haase, who edged out No. 26 Juan Monaco, 6-4, 6-4, 3-6, 6-2. Ranked 62nd in the world, this is the 23-year-old Haase's first trip to the third round of the Australian Open. 

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