Tennis: Nadal charges into second round at Australian Open
January 15, 2018 | 2:37 PM
by Reuters
Spanish world No. 1 Rafael Nadal, left, speaks to Victor Estrella Burgos of Dominican Republic after their first round match in Melbourne on Monday. Photo - Reuters

Melbourne: A ruthless Rafael Nadal preserved his creaky knees for tougher tests down the road by routing Dominican journeyman Victor Estrella Burgos 6-1, 6-1, 6-1 to sail into the second round of the Australian Open on Monday.

Playing his first competitive match since pulling out of the ATP Tour Finals with knee trouble in November, the world No. 1 showed no signs of early season rust as he tore through the evening match at Rod Laver Arena in one hour and 34 minutes.

The 31-year-old, who lost last year's final in a five-set classic with long-time rival Roger Federer, brought up three match points with a huge serve and closed out the match on the first when 37-year-old Estrella Burgos parried a return long.

Nadal's bid for a second Australian Open title and 17th Grand Slam championship will continue against Argentine Leonardo Mayer.

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