Nadal, Serena advance; Townsend out at Wimbledon

Nadal, Serena advance; Townsend out at Wimbledon
Rafael Nadal of Spain celebrates his win over Martin Klizan of Slovakia in their first round match for the Wimbledon Championships. (TATYANA ZENKOVICH / EPA)

WIMBLEDON, England - World No. 1 Rafael Nadal and Swiss stars Roger Federer and Stan Wawrinka were a trio of opening-round winners Tuesday at Wimbledon.

The second-seeded Nadal had to come from behind to beat capable Slovak Martin Klizan 4-6, 6-3, 6-3, 6-3 on the famed Centre Court. The 14-time Grand Slam champion Nadal was a first-round loser here a year ago.


The reigning French Open champ is now 37-7 lifetime at Wimbledon, where he's a two-time titlist and three-time runner-up.

On the women's side, former champions Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova secured first-round victories. But Chicago's Taylor Townsend -- who sparkled in the French Open and earned a wild-card entry into Wimbledon -- fell in her first-round match to 31st-seeded Czech Klara Koukalova 7-5, 6-2.

Nadal's second-round opponent will be big-serving Czech Lukas Rosol, who shocked the Spaniard in the second round here two years ago.

The fourth-seeded former world No. 1 Federer improved to 68-8 lifetime at The Championships with a comprehensive 6-1, 6-1, 6-3 handling of Italian Paolo Lorenzi in 1 hour, 33 minutes on the No. 1 Court at the All England Club. Federer broke Lorenzi six times, while the Italian went 0-for-5 on his break chances.

The 32-year-old 17-time Grand Slam king Federer, who titled on grass in Halle two weeks ago, is a seven-time Wimbledon champ and former runner-up.

Federer's second-round opponent will be Luxembourg left-hander Gilles Muller.

The fifth-seeded Wawrinka, meanwhile, avoided another first-round exit at tennis' most prestigious event, as the Swiss strongman defeated Portugal's Joao Sousa 6-3, 6-4, 6-3 to reach the second round for the first time since 2011.

Wawrinka fired 18 aces and dropped only seven points on his first serve in the 1-hour, 35-minute match.

The reigning Australian Open champ was stunned by Guillermo Garcia-Lopez in the first round of the French Open last month and suffered opening-round Wimbledon setbacks the previous two years.

Up next for Wawrinka will be Taiwan's Yen-Hsun Lu.

Meanwhile, on the women's side, world No. 1 Williams waltzed past fellow American Anna Tatishvili 6-1, 6-2 on the famed Centre Court, while the fifth-seeded former top-ranked star Sharapova won her eighth straight match on tour with a 6-1, 6-0 pasting of helpless Brit Samantha Murray on the No. 1 Court.

Williams owns 17 Grand Slam singles titles, including five Wimbledon crowns.

The reigning U.S. Open champ is now 71-9 at Wimbledon, including seven trips into the final at the All England Club.

Sharapova, fresh off her French Open title three weeks ago, captured her lone Wimbledon title in 2004 by stunning Williams in the final and was the runner- up here in 2011.


Up next for the Russian great will be Swiss Timea Bacsinszky.