Nadal Follows Federer Into U.S. Open Third Round as Isner Wins
Rafael Nadal lost three games in cruising into the third round at the U.S. Open tennis championship, while John Isner pulled out a four-set win to remain the last seeded American left in the men’s draw.
Nadal, the men’s No. 2 seed from Spain, eased past Brazilian qualifier Rogerio Dutra Silva 6-2, 6-1, 6-0 last night at the National Tennis Center in New York. Five-time U.S. Open champion Roger Federer of Switzerland and No. 4 David Ferrer of Spain also won their second-round matches before the 13th-seeded Isner fought past Gael Monfils of France.
Defending women’s champion Serena Williams is back in action today after yesterday’s 6-3, 6-0 rout of Galina Voskoboeva. Williams, the 31-year-old American who has won the season’s final Grand Slam four times, faces a second straight opponent from Kazakhstan as she meets Yaroslava Shvedova in tonight’s final scheduled match in Arthur Ashe Stadium.
“In regular tournaments I don’t have a day off,” said Williams, who also won a doubles match yesterday with sister Venus. “Only in the Grand Slams I get the luxury of having a day off. I didn’t get that, so I’m definitely used to it.”
Novak Djokovic, the men’s No. 1 seed from Serbia, faces Germany’s Benjamin Becker today in a second-round match in Arthur Ashe Stadium, where other day matches include No. 15 Sloane Stephens playing No. 23 Jamie Hampton in a matchup of Americans, and No. 5 Li Na of China facing No. 30 Laura Robson of England. Before Williams takes the court tonight, Juan Martin Del Potro, the sixth seed from Argentina, plays Australia’s Lleyton Hewitt in a matchup of former winners.
Murray will play in Louis Armstrong Stadium, where women’s third seed Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland meets No. 32 Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia in a third-round match, and No. 5 Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic plays American Denis Kudla in the second round.
Nadal, 27, needed one hour, 32 minutes to win his first career meeting against Dutra Silva and improve his career record against Brazilian players to 10-0. Nadal had 30 winners to nine for Dutra Silva.
“I feel very lucky and very happy to be back on the tour and playing well again,” said Nadal, who has won nine ATP Tour titles since returning in February from a seven-month layoff because of a knee injury. Nadal plays Ivan Dodig of Croatia in the third round and may face Federer in the quarterfinals.
Shortly before Nadal’s victory last night, 17-year-old American qualifier Victoria Duval lost to Slovakia’s Daniela Hantuchova 6-2, 6-3. Duval had upset 2011 U.S. Open champion Samantha Stosur in the first round.
“I couldn’t quite get myself going,” Duval said at a news conference. “But I’ve had a great experience. I’m going to take what I learned here to the other tournaments.”
Isner remained the last seeded American in the men’s draw by holding on against Monfils 7-5, 6-2, 4-6, 7-6 (7-4) in a match before a vocal crowd that ended just before midnight. Sam Querrey of the U.S., who was seeded 26th, earlier lost in four sets against Adrian Mannarino of France.
“I’m so ecstatic to be in the third round,” Isner said. “I knew playing against Gael was going to be a very close match; it always is. I also knew the atmosphere was going to be electric and it was.”
Isner moves on to face Germany’s Philipp Kohlschreiber, who beat the 6-foot-10 (2.08 meter) American in five sets during the third round in New York a year ago.
“I’m going to get some revenge on him,” Isner said.
In yesterday’s first match on the featured court in Arthur Ashe Stadium, Flavia Pennetta upset No. 4 seed Sara Errani in a meeting of Italian Fed Cup teammates. Errani became the highest-ranked player to exit the tournament.
Ferrer got past fellow Spaniard Roberto Bautista, 6-3, 6-7 (5-7), 6-1, 6-2, while No. 8 Richard Gasquet of France, No. 18 Janko Tipsarevic of Serbia and No. 19 Tommy Robredo of Spain won in straight sets.
Seventh-seeded Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic yesterday advanced to the third round along with No. 8 seed Angelique Kerber of Germany, No. 9 Jelena Jankovic of Serbia, No. 10 Roberta Vinci of Italy, No. 13 Ana Ivanovic of Serbia, and No. 16 Sabine Lisicki of Germany.
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