ATP Brisbane International: Roger Federer makes a winning start to 2014
Last Updated: 04/01/14 10:09am
Roger Federer: Eased past Finland's Jarkko Nieminen in Brisbane
Roger Federer dropped six games against Finland's Jarkko Niemenen on his way to a comfortable second round victory at the Brisbane International.
The Swiss ace looked in good shape and was untroubled in the Pat Rafter Arena, recording a 6-4 6-2 success.
"I expect myself to play a bit better in the next match, even though today was already very good for a first match in so many weeks, to be honest, and against Nieminen who can play very good tennis," Federer said.
"Now I have doubles tomorrow and the singles the next day, so it's really good for the rhythm and good for your game."
The 32-year-old will come up against a home favourite in the next round in the shape of Marinko Matosevic.
In what was his first tour victory on an Australian court, the Bosnia-born 28-year-old saw off the big-serving Sam Querrey 5-7 7-6 (3) 6-4.
One Australian did go out, though, with Matthew Ebden disappointing as he lost 6-2 6-4 to second seed Kei Nishikori.
Maric Cilic continued his comeback from a doping ban with an impressive 7-5 7-5 win over fifth-seeded Grigor Dimitrov.
"We worked a lot on the serve during the off season," said the Croatian, who blasted 16 aces in his upset win.
"I feel it's in a really good place and it could help me to play much better, especially against the top players."
In the women's draw, Angelique Kerber was close to victory against Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova when her opponent retired hurt.
Maria Sharapova also benefitted from a withdrawal as Ashleigh Barty could not take to the court because of a stomach problem, with the same fate striking Sabine Lisicki, with the Wimbledon finalist pulling out sick.