Seeds make easy progress
Originally published on: 26/02/10 12:28
Third seed Djokovic, who was this week replaced in the top three of the world rankings by Andy Murray, defeated Spanish wildcard Oscar Hernandez 6-3 6-3 to continue where he left at the Serbian Open, which he won at the weekend.
The 21-year-old Serbian will next play Italian Andres Seppi, who defeated American Sam Querrey 6-3 4-6 6-4.
“I think I played as well as I needed to to be able to win. Maybe result-wise it looked easy, but it was not easy,” said Djokovic, who admits it has not been straightforward adapting to both the high altitude in the Spanish capital and the court conditions at the newly-built La Caja Magica.
“Madrid is different from the other tournaments and the other cities because it’s at altitude and the balls are flying quite a lot and you don’t get a lot of control, so I was trying to produce a lot of spin and get into a rhythm, and I’ve done a pretty good job.”
Fifth seed Del Potro joined Djokovic in the third round after his opponent Tomas Berdych retired from their clash when trailing 6-2 4-1.
Next up for Del Potro is 11th seed Wawrinka, who saw off the challenge of Jeremy Chardy 6-4 7-5.
Last year’s runner-up Simon also safely negotiated his opening match at La Caja Magica as he saw off Italian qualifier Fabio Fognini 6-3 6-2.
That means that the only seed in the top 10 to have been knocked out of the men’s event so far is Simon’s fellow Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who lost to Ivan Ljubicic on Tuesday.
Simon, who lost to Murray in the final of this tournament seven months ago, will now face Ljubicic for a place in the quarter-finals.