World No1 Sir Andy Murray played down fears over an ankle injury after cruising past Russian teenager Andrey Rublev to reach the third round of the Australian Open men’s draw.
Murray’s ankle gave way at the start of the third set and he visibly remained in discomfort despite showing few ill-effects as he dispatched Rublev 6-3, 6-0, 6-2. The 29-year-old will face America’s world No32 Sam Query for a place in the last 16.
“I was moving okay at the end which is positive,” said Murray. “Sometimes if you roll your ankle and it feels bad, you can’t put weight on it but I could put weight on it so I’m sure it’ll be fine.”
Four-time tournament winner Roger Federer, meanwhile, was forced to save two set points in the third before conquering Noah Rubin of America 7-5, 6-3, 7-6 (7-3). Federer, 35, will cross swords with 2010 Wimbledon finalist Tomas Berdych in round three.
Australian bad boy Nick Kyrgios was given two warnings, for swearing and racquet abuse, as he threw away a two-set lead during a 1-6, 6-7 (1-7), 6-4, 6-2, 10-8 implosion against world No89 Andreas Seppi of Italy.
“I did a couple of things in the off-season that I’m probably not going to do next time. My body’s not in good enough shape. You live and learn,” said Kyrgios.
In the women’s draw, defending champion Angelique Kerber celebrated her 29th birthday by advancing past fellow German Carina Witthoeft 6-2, 6-7 (3-7), 6-2.
One player unwilling to be reminded of her age was 36-year-old Venus Williams, who beat Swiss qualifier Stefanie Voegele 6-3, 6-2. She said: “I’ve to talk about my age every interview.”