French Open: Federer, Nadal Power On

Roger Federer sauntered into the third round of Roland Garros for the 15th time on Wednesday by seeing off German lucky loser Oscar Otte.

The 37-year-old Federer held off a persistent world number 144 Otte, saving all four break points he faced in a 6-4, 6-3, 6-4 win on Court Philippe Chatrier.

Next up for the 20-time Grand Slam title winner is a clash with Norway’s Casper Ruud who put out Italian 29th seed Matteo Berrettini 6-4, 7-5, 6-3.

“The Grand Slams are incredible. You can meet a player who qualified who (you) have not heard of before,” said Federer, who last played at Roland Garros in 2015.

“It was difficult, he really played a great match.”

Federer’s only French Open trophy came in 2009, and 10 years on he faces a daunting task to grab a second, potentially needing to beat Stefanos Tsitsipas, Rafael Nadal and world number one Novak Djokovic in order to come out on top.

Nadal continued the strong start to his bid for a record-extending 12th title with a comfortable victory over German qualifier Yannick Maden.

The 32-year-old Nadal was in near total control against world number 114 Maden bar some nervy moments in the third set, winning 6-1, 6-2, 6-4.

The 17-time major champion will play Belgian 27th seed David Goffin in the last 32.

Dutch women’s fourth seed Kiki Bertens retired from her match with Viktoria Kuzmova with illness while trailing 3-1, 40-15.

The 27-year-old, one of the favourites for the tournament, complained of shaking and a lack of energy before calling it quits, leaving Kuzmova with a third-round clash against British 26th seed Johanna Konta.

Greek star Tsitsipas did not have things all his own way against Bolivia’s Hugo Dellien on Court Simonne Mathieu, but managed to grind out a 4-6, 6-0, 6-3, 7-5 victory on his fourth match point.

The sixth seed, who beat Federer en route to the Australian Open semifinals earlier this year, will take on Serbia’s Filip Krajinovic in his maiden appearance in the third round.

Elsewhere on Wednesday, 2015 champion Stan Wawrinka showed that he cannot be ruled out of contention with an impressive 6-1, 6-4, 6-0 success against in-form Chilean Cristian Garin.

The Swiss will play Bulgaria’s Grigor Dimitrov next, after the former world number three beat 11th seed Marin Cilic in a marathon encounter 6-7 (3/7), 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 (7/2), 6-3.

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