Djokovic, Federer roll to victories in Rome

ROME — Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer appear back on track after early losses in Madrid last week. Serena Williams, meanwhile, is maintaining her dominance.

Top-ranked Djokovic quickly overcame an early break to cruise past Spanish qualifier Albert Montanes 6-2, 6-3 and second-seeded Federer routed Italian wild card Potito Starace 6-1, 6-2 Tuesday to reach the third round of the Italian Open.

In the women's tournament, the top-ranked Williams brushed aside Laura Robson 6-2, 6-2 a day after the rising British player had beaten her sister, Venus Williams.

Djokovic dropped his serve to fall behind 2-1 in the opening set but broke back immediately and took control from there against his 32-year-old opponent.

The six-time Grand Slam champion didn't appear to have any problem with his right ankle, which he twisted while representing Serbia in the Davis Cup in April then appeared to hurt again in a loss to Grigor Dimitrov at the Madrid Open last week.

Djokovic has reached the final in four of the five past years at the Foro Italico, winning the title in 2008 and 2011.

Federer has never won in Rome, with his best results being two runner-up finishes. He lost the 2003 final to Felix Mantila and in 2006 dropped a fifth-set tiebreaker to Rafael Nadal.

Federer returned to action last week after a seven-week layoff.

Against Starace Federer never struggled, with the Foro Italico crowd's support for the local favorite proving useless.


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