Federer beats mystery Russian at Open


MELBOURNE, Australia, January 16 – Swiss great Roger Federer cruised into the second round of the Australian Open with a straight-sets win over mystery Russian opponent Alexander Kudryavtsev on Monday.

The all-time grand slam champion spent just 1hr 38min on Rod Laver Arena in administering a 7-5, 6-2, 6-2 win over the 172-ranked Kudryavtsev.

Federer will next play either Frenchman Eric Prodon or Andreas Beck of Germany. He is chasing his fifth Australian title and has never lost in the first round in 13 visits to Melbourne.

Federer, who had never played Kudryavtsev before and had to scour the Internet for some tips about the Russian, broke serve six times and lost his service once in the final set.

The Swiss won 80 percent of his first serves and dominated the returns, clocking up a total of 43 winners to 21.

“I heard a few things about him on the Internet and I knew what to expect although I didn’t know his favourite shots or weaknesses,” Federer said.

Federer said he had no problems with back spasms that had troubled him at the Qatar Open en route to Melbourne.

“I’ve got no problems with it, I was 100 percent fit three or four days ago,” he said. “Now I’m here and I’m ready to play.”