World number one Novak Djokovic has survived a second-round scare from American Frances Tiafoe to keep his Australian Open title defence alive.
- Novak Djokovic was pushed by American Frances Tiafoe, whose two time violations on serve proved costly
- Márton Fucsovics defeated Stan Wawrinka 7-5, 6-1, 4-6, 2-6, 7-6 (11-9)
- Dominic Thiem beat Dominik Koepfer 6-4, 6-0, 6-2
The Serbian had to scramble to get past the talented the world number 64 and secure a 6-3, 6-7 (7-3), 7-6 (7-2), 6-3 win on Rod Laver Arena on Wednesday.
Tiafoe did himself no favours with two time violations on his serve, the second contributing to a crucial break in the fourth set.
In a pulsating match both players did plenty of damage with their serve — eight-time champion Djokovic firing 26 aces and Tiafoe 23.
“I think I served very well today but my opponent also hurt me in the same way,” Djokovic said.
“It is probably the most aces I have served to someone and someone has served to me in a long time.”
Earlier, Stan Wawrinka coughed up three match points before losing in five sets to Márton Fucsovics in a thrilling second-round encounter.
Wawrinka, the 2014 men’s champion, forced a deciding set against Fucsovics on John Cain Arena after earlier trailing two sets to love.
The fifth set went to a tiebreak and the 17th-seeded Wawrinka appeared headed for victory when he led his Hungarian opponent 6-1.
He held the three match points in the tiebreak when leading 9-6, but the unseeded Fucsovics reeled off five consecutive points to clinch victory after three hours and 59 minutes on court.
Fucsovics triumphed 7-5, 6-1, 4-6, 2-6, 7-6 (11-9).
It was Fucsovics’s second five-set match of the tournament, having beaten Australian Marc Polmans in the first round.
“Right now, I feel like I’m dying,” Fucsovics said in his on-court interview.
Wawrinka had cruised past Pedro Sousa in the opening round but faced a far greater challenge in Fucsovics.
The Swiss fought out the third set, then ripped his way through the fourth to set up a dramatic finish.
In the fifth set, Fucsovics broke Wawrinka’s serve while leading 4-3, only to be immediately broken back when serving for the match the next game, with the contest ultimately decided by the dramatic tiebreak.
Fucsovics will face 14th seed Milos Raonic in the third round after the Canadian beat Corentin Moutet 6-7 (1/7), 6-1, 6-1, 6-4.
In other results in the men’s draw, third seed Dominic Thiem produced a clinical display in defeating Dominik Koepfer 6-4, 6-0, 6-2.
The US Open champion, who was runner-up to Novak Djokovic at Melbourne Park last year, will meet either Nick Kyrgios or Ugo Humbert in the third round.
Eighth seed Diego Schwartzman comfortably accounted for Alexandre Miller 6-2, 6-0, 6-3.
The Argentine has set up a clash with Russian qualifier Aslan Karatsev, who beat Egor Gerasimov 6-0, 6-1, 6-0.
Canadian 20th seed Felix Auger-Aliassime reached the third round by knocking out Australian James Duckworth in straight sets, 6-4, 6-1, 6-2.
Auger-Aliassime’s victory sets him on a collision course with the winner of the match between Denis Shapovalov and Bernard Tomic.