Nadal, Djokovic advance, Cilic fails

World number one Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic advanced to the third round of Wimbledon while third seed Marin Cilic was knocked out on Thursday.

Second seed Nadal was too classy for Mikhail Kukushkin, needing just over two hours to defeat him 6-4, 6-3, 6-4 on Centre Court.

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The Spaniard played tight, conservative tennis, taking advantage of Kukushkin’s 34 unforced errors to notch up another straight set victory.

But Nadal’s win was not without struggles, as the pair swapped breaks early in the opening set and it was anyone’s game at 4-4. Always better in the big moments, Nadal broke him in the final game to take a set lead.

One break was enough for Nadal to win the second set but Kukushkin rallied in the third, with consistent tennis leading to a 3-1 lead. However, a superlative Nadal found his forehand range and broke the world number 77 twice to move to the third round.

Meanwhile, Djokovic was near flawless in his 6-1, 6-2, 6-3 victory over Horacio Zeballos, firing 31 winners to just four unforced errors in the 90 minute demolition on Court 2.

The Serb seems to getting back to his best as he looks for his first title of any sort since July 2017.

Meanwhile, last years finalist Marin Cilic suffered a shock loss a the hands of Guido Pella in a five set epic. The Argentine put in mammoth effort to come back from two sets down to win 3-6, 1-6, 6-4, 7-6(3), 7-2. Pella survived 27 aces from Cilic and reaches the third round at SW19 for the first time.

Other men’s singles results:

A De Minaur d. P Herbert 6-2, 6-7(8-10), 7-5, 6-3
F Tiafoe d. J Benneteau 4-6, 6-3, 6-4, 6-2
G Simon d. M Berrettini 6-3, 7-6(7-4), 6-2
(25) P Kohlschreiber d. G Muller 7-6(8-6), 7-6(7-4), 7-6(7-3)
(31) S Tsitsipas d. J Donaldson 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 4-6, 6-3
(8) K Anderson d. A Seppi 6-3, 6-7(5-7), 6-3, 6-4
T Fabbiano d. S Wawrinka 7-6(9-7), 6-3, 7-6(8-6)
(9) J Isner d. R Bemelmans 6-1, 6-4, 6-7(6-8), 6-7(3-7), 7-5
(15) N Kyrgios d. R Haase 6-3, 6-4, 7-5

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