Roger Federer remains on course for a record-equalling 14th grand slam title after easily defeating Evgeny Korolev 6-2 6-3 6-1 in the second round at the Australian Open today.
The victory saw the 27-year-old Swiss star move above Boris Becker into seventh place for the most open era grand slam match wins with a 165-25 win-loss record.
It also set up a third round clash with Marat Safin, who beat him on the way to the 2005 title, after the Russian enjoyed a straight sets win over Guillermo Garcia-Lopez.
Qualifier Korolev, who defeated former world number one Carlos Moya to book his date with Federer, was no match for the world number two who looked comfortable throughout.
The first set took just 28 minutes as Federer got two early breaks, thanks largely to the 20-year-old’s 15 unforced errors, to go 5-1 up.
Korolev was certainly not daunted by facing the former world number one and three-time Australian Open champion, showing plenty of tenacity and at times a little audacity, to extend the rallies but ultimately it was futile.
The second set went with serve until the eighth game when Federer got the breakthrough and then served out for the set and he broke the Russian twice early in the third to race to a 4-0 lead.
Korolev held to make it 4-1 but with the youngster’s unforced error count mounting Federer closed out the game with ease in one hour 27 minutes.