The world no.3 and six-time champion, Roger Federer, continued his unscathed progress at this year's Wimbledon as he breezed past the Italian Fabio Fognini with consummate ease to book a spot in third round, in the process treating the Centre Court crowd to an absolute masterclass.
It seemed as though the Swiss had wound back the clock to his prime when he dominated this venue like it was his own playground with his opponents being reduced to mere sparring partners. This domineering performance would, moreover, send an ominous and foreboding message to his young rivals.
The 68th ranked Italian was simply overwhelmed by the maestro's speed, power and unparalleled versatility. The first set saw the unseeded Italian struggling to win points on his serve as Federer's crisp and powerful returns placed Fognini on the back foot right away in his service games. Though, the Italian had a relatively easier time on his serve in the next two sets, he was unable to create any sort of impression on his illustrious opponent's serve. The final score was 6-1, 6-3, 6-2 in Roger's favour.
The four Canadians in the singles main draw at Wimbledon were in action on Tuesday at the All-England Club as StÃ©phanie Dubois, Vasek Pospisil, Milos Raonic and Aleksandra Wozniak took to the court for their first round matches.
On the women's side, Wozniak went up against Russian Vera Dushevina, ranked no. 94 on the WTA rankings. The two players had met once before on grass in 2009 and Wozniak dominated her opponent 6-1, 6-0. Dushevina proved to be tougher competition on Tuesday, but Wozniak still came away with a 6-2, 7-5 victory.
The bottom half of the men's draw kicked off their assault on Wimbledon 2012 today, and the favourites showed their week 2 credentials rather early by powering their way into the second round. Two-time former champion Rafael Nadal had to battle back in a tight opening set before getting the better of Thomaz Bellucci in three sets 7-6(0), 6-2, 6-3. World no.4 Andy Murray was meanwhile in sublime form, giving the local fans plenty to cheer about during his 6-1, 6-1, 6-4 triumph over former world no.3 Nikolay Davydenko. Also picking up wins were charismatic Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, former US Open champion Juan Martin del Potro and American no.1 Mardy Fish.
French Open champion Rafael Nadal was given a rude shock early in his match against Brazilian left-hander Thomaz Bellucci, who raced away to a 4-1 lead before the world no.2 started playing catch-up. The opening set eventually made its way into a tiebreak which Nadal romped through to love as if to emphasize his distaste at having been pushed so early in the contest.
The Indian tennis contingent kicked off their Wimbledon campaign in fine style today with the 13th seeded pairing of Sania Mirza and Bethanie Mattek-Sands recording a comfortably 6-4, 6-2 win in their first round encounter with the scratch pairing of Alla Kudryavtseva and Sloane Stephens.
The first set was closely contested, with the Mirza / Mattek-Sands pairing saving 5 of 6 break points and taking 2 of the 3 chances that came theri way to sneak away with the opening set. The second set was a considerably easier affair with the experienced duo running away with it 6-2 in 40 minutes.
In 1997, a 16-year old American named Venus Williams made her debut on the hallowed lawns of Wimbledon. The youngster crashed out in the first round that year, but came back the next 15 years to make 8 final appearances and lift the aptly named Venus Rosewater Dish 5 times. However, age catches up with every great Champion, and on the opening Monday of Wimbledon 2012, Venus made only her second exit in the very first round losing to young Elena Vesnina in two humbling sets 6-1, 6-3.
When you are struggling with health, fitness and form, the last court you want to play your first round match on is court 2 at Wimbledon, long fabled as the Graveyard of the Seeds. While Venus may not have been seeded this year, the court did gobble up yet another famous name as she was quite comfortably outplayed by her Russian opponent, who showed the value of being a good doubles player on the grass at Wimbledon, coming forward at will to close points early.
World no.1 Novak Djokovic got more than a useful workout in his opening match at Wimbledon as the defending champion cruised past former French Open champion Juan Carlos Ferrero in straight sets, 6-3, 6-3, 6-1 to book his place in the second round.
Having skipped all the pre-Wimbledon tune-up events, there was a slight concern about Novak's form and fitness after a disappointing conclusion to the clay court season where he went down rather tamely to Rafael Nadal in the final of the French Open. However, with his first serve working to near perfection, Djokovic was able to dig himself out of any holes he found himself in, and powered his way to a comfortable win.
It was a good start to Wimbledon on Monday morning for most of the seeds as they rushed on and off the courts without needing to play a single three setter. Reigning US Open champion Samantha Stosur won the race to see who could finish their first round matches quickest, making short work of Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro. World no.3 Agnieszka Radwanska wasn't far behind, securing her passage comfortably into the second round. There were also wins for former French Open champion Li Na and last year's surprise semi-finalist here Sabine Lisicki, but a seed did make an early exit as the unlucky Italian Flavia Pennetta crashed out at the hands of compatriot Carmila Giorgi, who made it to main draw through the qualifiers.
World no.3 Agnieszka Radwanska kicked off the action on Court no.2, easing past an injury stricken Magdalena Rybarikova of Slovakia in straight sets, 6-3, 6-3. Radwanska though could face much sterner competition in the second round with 5-time Wimbledon champion Venus Williams drawn to face her in round 2 for the second straight Grand Slam. Radwanska eased past Venus at the same stage of the French Open last month, but Venus is likely to pose a much more potent threat on a court she has come to regard as her second home. Before that though Venus will need to squeeze past a competent player in Elena Vesnina of Russia. That match takes place later today.