Roger Federer gains 3rd round

Updated: January 17, 2013, 12:52 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

MELBOURNE, Australia -- With the sun setting at the end of a torridly hot day at the Australian Open, Roger Federer ensured he made the most of a favorable evening draw.

Wearing bright pink shoelaces, Federer advanced to the third round with a 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 win over Russian Nikolay Davydenko on Thursday.

The 17-time Grand Slam champion was a winner of sorts before he even stepped out at Rod Laver Arena, having received the luck of the draw -- a 7 p.m. start time after the worst of the 100-plus-degree heat had subsided.

"I'm very happy to have played so well against him," Federer said of his 18th win over Davydenko in their 20 matches.

U.S. Open champion Andy Murray had another easy win Thursday, a 6-2, 6-2, 6-4 victory over Joao Sousa of Portugal.

Murray, who ended a 76-year drought by British men in Grand Slam tournaments with his win at Flushing Meadows last year, dropped only seven games in his opening match against Robin Haase of the Netherlands.

On Thursday, the third-seeded Murray didn't allow Sousa a single break point chance in steamy conditions at Melbourne Park.

"You need to be the one that's trying to dictate the points in these conditions," said Murray, who practices in Florida. "Miami is the perfect preparation. It's hot and humid there, although it certainly doesn't get up to 37 degrees (Celsius; 99 Fahrenheit). It was a good match to get done in straight sets."

Despite the high temperatures -- it later peaked at 106 Fahrenheit -- tournament officials left the retractable roofs on both main arenas open because a combination of factors including humidity and court temperature didn't warrant making the venues a temporary indoor haven from the heat.

Ice vests and towels helped players keep their cool, and a women's tour rule allowing a 10-minute break between sets was invoked late in the day, tournament director Craig Tiley said.

"It's always the referee's discretion, but the lack of humidity helped us today," Tiley said. Australia sweltered through a week of record high average temperatures earlier this month, but the first three days of the Open were relatively mild.

Among the other men advancing was 2008 Australian finalist Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who pretended to do pushups to disguise a fall during his 6-3, 7-6 (1), 6-3 win over Japan's Go Soeda.

Australia's Bernard Tomic went through to the third round along with No. 13 Milos Raonic of Canada, No. 17 Philipp Kohlschreiber of Germany, No. 21 Andreas Seppi of Italy and Lithuanian qualifier Ricardas Berankis, who beat No. 25 Florian Mayer 6-2, 6-3, 6-1.

Gael Monfils improbably advanced to the third round with a five-set win over Taiwan's Lu Yen-hsun despite the Frenchman having 23 double faults, including three on match point. Fortunately for Monfils, he also had 29 aces in the 7-6 (5), 4-6, 0-6, 6-1, 8-6 win.

Tomic beat Novak Djokovic at the Hopman Cup and won last week's Sydney International, his first ATP tournament victory. He has won 10 matches in a row and has held 76 consecutive service games through that stretch.

He'll face Federer in the third round Sunday, a rematch of their fourth-round match last year.

"We'll know each other a bit better this time around," said Federer, who had two lopsided wins over Tomic in 2012.

Djokovic, attempting to win his third Australian Open in a row, plays his third-round match Friday against Radek Stepanek.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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