Sun, 27 Sep 2020

Nadal opens Slam campaign with demolition

21 Jan 2020, 17:43 GMT+10

Melbourne - World No 1 Rafael Nadal blitzed past Hugo Dellien on Tuesday to launch his campaign to equal Roger Federer's record of 20 Grand Slam titles, dropping just five games in the one-sided annihilation.

The sparkling Spaniard was in imperious form to sweep past a Bolivian making his Australian Open debut 6-2, 6-3, 6-0 on Rod Laver Arena in barely two hours.

The Mallorcan, the first man to be world number one in three different decades, is not only seeking to match great rival Federer's Slam mark, but become the first man in the Open era to win all four Majors at least twice.

It is a big ask for the 33-year-old, who has only won the title once before at Melbourne Park, against a tearful Federer in 2009, with four runner-up finishes to his name.

"For me it is a positive start. What you want is a first round win and in three sets is even better," said Nadal, who clubbed 38 winners and made only 21 unforced errors.

"This court always brings me lots of positive energy."

Nadal, in a pink sleeveless shirt and matching shoes, was in total charge against the world number 73, storming to a 5-0 lead in the opening set before Dellien held serve, then against the odds broke, before the Spaniard served out the set.

Underdog Dellien was broken in the sixth game of the second set but hit back again to break Nadal for the second time in the match before the top seed again rallied to restore control with some sizzling forehands down the line.

A flagging Dellien gave it his best shot but Nadal quickly raced 3-0 up in the third set as his physicality and power shone through and there was no way back.

"He (Dellien) has a tough first five games but he had chances to win games," said Nadal, who lost in last year's final to Novak Djokovic.

"He's a fighter, he's a great guy."

Nadal next plays either Argentine Federico Delbonis or Portugal's Joao Sousa.

Results on day two of the Australian Open Grand Slam at Melbourne Park on Tuesday:

Men's singles

First round

Rafael Nadal (ESP x1) bt Hugo Dellien (BOL) 6-2, 6-3, 6-0

Pablo Carreno-Busta (ESP x27) bt Jozef Kovalik (SVK) 6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 7-6 (7/2)

Mikael Ymer (SWE) bt Yasutaka Uchiyama (JPN) 6-4, 6-1, 6-2

Karen Khachanov (RUS x16) bt Mario Vilella (ESP) 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7/4), 6-3

Dominic Thiem (AUT x5) bt Adrian Mannarino (FRA) 6-3, 7-5, 6-2

Stanislas Wawrinka (SUI x15) bt Damir Dzumhur (BIH) 7-5, 6-7 (4/7), 6-4, 6-4

Tennys Sandgren (USA) bt Marco Trungelliti (ARG) 6-1, 6-4, 7-5

Jordan Thompson (AUS) bt Alexander Bublik (KAZ) 6-4, 6-3, 6-2

Fabio Fognini (ITA x12) bt Reilly Opelka (USA) 3-6, 6-7 (3/7), 6-4, 6-3, 7-6 (10/5)

Jannik Sinner (ITA) bt Max Purcell (AUS) 7-6 (7/2), 6-2, 6-4

Tommy Paul (USA) bt Leonardo Mayer (ARG) 4-6, 6-4, 6-4, 6-4

Hubert Hurkacz (POL x31) bt Dennis Novak (AUT) 6-7 (4/7), 1-6, 6-2, 6-3, 6-4

John Millman (AUS) bt Ugo Humbert (FRA) 7-6 (7/3), 6-3, 1-6, 7-5

Filip Krajinovic (SRB) bt Quentin Halys (FRA) 7-6 (9/7), 7-6 (7/1), 3-6, 4-6, 7-5

Christian Garin (CHI) bt Stefano Travaglia (ITA) 6-4, 6-3, 6-4

Milos Raonic (CAN x32) bt Lorenzo Giustino (ITA) 6-2, 6-1, 6-3

Benoit Paire (FRA x21) bt Cedrik-Marcel Stebe (GER) 6-4, 3-6, 6-3, 6-7 (2/7), 6-0

Marin Cilic (CRO) bt Corentin Moutet (FRA) 6-3, 6-2, 6-4

Michael Mmoh (USA) bt Pablo Andujar (ESP) 6-1, 6-4, 6-4

Roberto Bautista (ESP x9) bt Feliciano Lopez (ESP) 6-2, 6-2, 7-5

Diego Schwartzman (ARG x14) bt Lloyd Harris (RSA) 6-4, 6-2, 6-2

Alejandro Davidovich (ESP) bt Norbert Gombos (SVK) 4-6, 6-4, 2-6, 6-3, 6-2

Marc Polmans (AUS) bt Mikhail Kukushkin (KAZ) 6-4, 6-3, 4-6, 6-7 (8/10), 6-4

Dusan Lajovic (SRB x24) bt Kyle Edmund (GBR) 7-6 (9/7), 6-3, 7-6 (7/4)

Tatsuma Ito (JPN) bt Prajnesh Gunneswaran (IND) 6-4, 6-2, 7-5

Women's singles

First round

Polona Hercog (SLO) bt Rebecca Peterson (SWE) 6-3, 6-3

Greet Minnen (BEL) bt Aliaksandra Sasnovich (BLR) 7-6 (7/3), 4-6, 7-5

Elena Rybakina (KAZ x29) bt Bernarda Pera (USA) 6-3, 6-2

Alison Riske (USA x18) bt Wang Yafan (CHN) 7-6 (7/5), 2-6, 6-3

Madison Keys (USA x10) bt Darya Kasatkina (RUS) 6-3, 6-1

Arantxa Rus (NED) bt Magda Linette (POL) 1-6, 6-3, 6-4

Nao Hibino (JPN) bt Peng Shuai (CHN) 4-6, 7-6 (8/6), 6-3

Maria Sakkari (GRE x22) bt Margarita Gasparyan (RUS) 6-2, 6-2

Ons Jabeur (TUN) bt Johanna Konta (GBR x12) 6-4, 6-2

Caroline Garcia (FRA) bt Madison Brengle (USA) 6-7 (5/7), 6-2, 6-2

Dayana Yastremska (UKR x23) bt Kaja Juvan (SLO) 6-1, 6-1

Wang Qiang (CHN x27) bt Pauline Parmentier (FRA) 7-6 (7/2), 6-3

Fiona Ferro (FRA) bt Alison Van Uytvanck (BEL) 6-2, 6-1

Belinda Bencic (SUI x6) bt Anna Karolina Schmiedlova (SVK) 6-3, 7-5

Jelena Ostapenko (LAT) bt Liudmila Samsonova (RUS) 6-1, 6-4

Donna Vekic (CRO x19) bt Maria Sharapova (RUS) 6-3, 6-4

Ajla Tomljanovic (AUS) bt Anastasija Sevastova (LAT x31) 6-1, 6-1

Karolina Pliskova (CZE x2) bt Kristina Mladenovic (FRA) 6-1, 7-5

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