Nadal and Federer safely through to round two

World number one Rafael Nadal fought back from losing the first set to beat Martin Klizan 4-6 6-3 6-3 6-3 on Centre Court and secure a place in the second round at Wimbledon yesterday.

Nadal, who lost in the first round last year, recovered from what was a spirited opening attack by Klizan, ranked some 50 places below the recently crowned French Open champion.

One of Nadal’s biggest challengers, Roger Federer, began his quest for a record eighth title in style by brushing aside Paolo Lorenzi in straight sets.

The Swiss grass-court master failed to reach the quarter-finals of a grand slam for the first time in a decade last summer in London, bombing out in the second round to Ukrainian Sergiy Stakhovsky.

The 32-year-old offered Italian Lorenzi zero chance of an upset at the All England Club yesterday though, easing through 6-1 6-1 6-3 in one hour and 33 minutes.

Elsewhere, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga wasted little time in securing a place in the second round when returning to Court One yesterday morning.

The French 14th seed had been left frustrated by heavy late-evening rain on Monday which denied him the chance to serve for the match in an epic clash against Austrian Jurgen Melzer.

Tsonga was 6-1 3-6 3-6 6-2 5-4 in front when ominous dark clouds delivered the downpour which finally brought play to a halt.

However, Tsonga resumed in positive mood yesterday, wrapping up the 10th game to love.

The Frenchman forced three match points following a review of a long serve, when after a rally Melzer fired the ball to the net, which he claimed with an ace.

In the women’s singles, French Open champion Maria Sharapova brushed off early hiccups with her serve to ease past British hope Samantha Murray in straight sets.

Fifth seed Sharapova indicated exactly why she sits 242 world ranking places ahead of 26-year-old Murray, coasting home 6-1 6-0.

Stockport’s Murray produced several smart winners, but wasted three break points in the first set, and never recovered.

Sharapova’s routine victory will have gone some way to exorcising last year’s lacklustre second-round exit at the hands of Portuguese qualifier Michelle Larcher de Brito.

Meanwhile, Serena Williams thundered down a barrage of aces to serve notice of her determination to reclaim the title.

The American, a firm title favourite and the top seed, took just a minute over an hour to see off Anna Tatishvili on Centre Court, winning 6-1 6-2 to reach the second round.

Sabine Lisicki also began her quest to go one better than last year’s runner-up achievement by posting a resounding Centre Court victory.

Returning to the scene of her humbling by Marion Bartoli in a one-sided women’s singles final, Lisicki overcame early jitters to overwhelm Israel’s Wimbledon novice Julia Glushko.

While a flurry of unforced errors meant it was not a performance to drive fear into the minds of the likes of Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova, the 24-year-old came through 6-2 6-1 to suggest she could again be a contender come the later rounds.

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