Top seed Novak Djokovic and defending champion Rafael Nadal advanced into the third round of the ongoing Italian Open in Rome after winning their respective second-round matches on Wednesday.
Djokovic eased past Italian wild card entrant Salvatore Caruso 6-3, 6-2 to continue his quest for fifth Italian Open title. The 33-year-old will next face countrymate Filip Krajinovic in the next round.
“It was a very good test for me. I’m very pleased with the way I handled myself in important moments,” said Djokovic as per the ATP Tour website. “I was in control of the match. I served well when I needed to come up with a big serve and moved well. I constructed the points as the clay courts demand, because it’s obviously completely different surface in terms of building the point tactically. Everything went well. I’m very pleased.”
Meanwhile, clay master Nadal made showed his usual brilliance on his favourite surface as he thrashed his fellow Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta 6-1, 6-1.
“It’s good to be back on the Tour,” said Nadal, in an on-court interview. “I miss the crowds. I played a good match, maybe he was a little bit tired after all his matches in New York. It was a perfect start for me. It was solid, (and I hit) good shots on the forehand and backhand. I didn’t expect to play that well.”
Nadal outclassed Busta in all departments. The 19-time Grand Slam winner won 79 per cent and 89 per cent of points in the first and second serve respectively, while Busta’s corresponding numbers were 46 and 36 per cent.
The 34-year-old five out of nine break points. Busta, on the other hand, managed none. Nadal won a total of 63 points in comparison to Busta’s 32.
Nadal will next play No. 13 seed Milos Raonic or Dusan Lajovic in the third round.