Roger Federer admitted he is facing an important week in his season after breezing into the third round of the Miami Masters.
The world number two ended the hopes of American Kevin Kim with a 6-3 6-2 win to set up a meeting with experienced German Nicolas Kiefer in the next round.
The Swiss was untroubled on his way to taking the first set and established a 5-2 lead in the second before being forced to save two break points before serving out.
The result was never in doubt, however, as Federer’s bid to win a third Sony Ericsson Open title got off to a textbook start.
“I felt good,” said Federer, who has not won a Masters event in his last 12 attempts.
“I’ve never played him before but I realised very quickly what his pattern was, especially on the serve.
“Even though he had a good serve today, he had a good few games, but I think I did well today. I think it was a good match. It was great start to the tournament.
“I feel like this is an important week for me to do well, especially now that I have matches again under my belt.
“I’m into the third round here, so I feel like things are going well for me again.”
Third seed Novak Djokovic also progressed, breaking once in the first set and twice in the second to see off Canada’s Frank Dancevic 6-3 6-2.
Andy Roddick made short work of his evening match with Diego Junqueira of Argentina, the fifth-seeded American needing less than an hour to seal a 6-1 6-1 win.
Former world number one Lleyton Hewitt crashed out in the second round, the Australian beaten 6-1 6-2 by Gilles Simon, the seventh seed from France.
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, the 2008 Australian Open finalist, also progressed with relative ease, defeating Agustin Calleri of Argentina 6-1 6-1.
Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis was ousted in three sets by 31st-seeded Paul-Henri Mathieu of France while Russia’s Mikhail Youzhny also bowed out, losing 6-3 3-6 6-4 Tomas Berdych, the 21st seed from the Czech Republic.
Russia’s Marat Safin was his usual Jekyll-and-Hyde self as he ousted Oscar Hernandez, producing a mix of the good and the ugly on his way to a 6-4 2-6 6-1 win, while Kiefer booked his meeting with Federer thanks to victory over French veteran Fabrice Santoro.
Two seeds fell in the shape of Nicolas Almagro and Robin Soderling – both to Americans.
Californian Taylor Dent edged out 19th seed Almagro in a topsy-turvy match, running out a 2-6 6-2 7-6 (9/7) winner, while Robert Kendrick beat Soderling of Sweden 6-4 6-2.
Other seeds to progress included Gael Monfils, James Blake, Tommy Robredo, Dmitry Tursunov and Rainer Schuettler.
Dinara Safina, the second seed in the women’s draw, was on fine form, breaking Mathilde Johansson five times on her way to a 6-1 6-3 second-round win.
Fourth seed Elena Dementieva survived a second-set scare before progressing 6-0 3-6 6-3 at the expense of compatriot Anastasia Pivovarova.
Another Russian, Svetlana Kuznetsova, was forced to come from a set down to beat Tamira Paszek 2-6 7-5 6-1.
Ana Ivanovic, the seventh seed from Serbia, defeated Mariya Koryttseva of Ukraine 6-0 6-3, but Monterrey Open winner Marion Bartoli, the 12th seed here, crashed out in straight sets against the unseeded Anastasiya Yakimova of Belarus.
Two seeds, Sybille Bammer and Alona Bondarenko, had nightmare outings, claiming just three games between them.
Bammer, seeded 27th, was ousted 6-1 6-1 by Australian Samantha Stosur, while 28th seed Bondarenko was hammered 6-1 6-0 by former world number seven Nicole Vaidisova.
There were no such woes for 13th-seeded Dane Caroline Wozniacki, who defeated Jelena Dokic of Australia 6-3 5-7 6-2, while Victoria Azarenka, the 11th seed from Belarus, posted a straight-sets win over Russia’s Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.
There were also wins for Flavia Pennetta, Patty Schnyder, Amelie Mauresmo, Anna Chakvetadze, Alisa Kleybanova, Agnes Szavay and Carla Suarez-Navarro.