Wawrinka, Del Potro advance at Flushing Meadows

Third seed Stan Wawrinka defeated Alessandro Giannessi 6-1, 7-6 (4), 7-5 at the US Open on Thursday to progress to the third round. 

Wawrinka is hoping to bounce back in the final grand slam of the year after failing to impress at Wimbledon, where he crashed out in the second round, with the Swiss having failed to build on the momentum of three titles in the first half of the year.

The 31-year-old looked in impressive form in the first set as he broke Giannessi in the fourth game to go 3-1 up. Wawrinka didn’t look back from there as he broke the Italian again in the sixth game before claiming the set in just 31 minutes. 

It was Giannessi who had the best of the early running in the second set, going 5-2 up on the back of two breaks, but Wawrinka launched an incredible comeback to force a tiebreaker which he duly won.

While opportunites were plentiful in the third set, neither player could take advantage of early break point chances. It was Wawrinka who struck when it mattered though, converting his fifth break point opportunity when 6-5 up to wrap up the match.

The world number three will face Daniel Evans after the Briton stunned 27th seed Alexander Zverev 6-4, 6-4, 5-7, 6-2. 

Meanwhile, Juan Martin del Potro also emerged victorious 7-6 (5), 6-3, 6-2 in his match with 19th seed Steve Johnson. 

Del Potro is vying to get his career back on track after a spate of wrist injuries, and he looked back to near his best last month when he won a silver medal at the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. 

In his match with Johnson, Del Potro endured a tough battle early on, but upon winning the first set, the Argentine became more dominant with his serve a deadly weapon throughout.

The 27-year-old will take on 11th seed David Ferrer after the Spaniard overcame Fabio Fognini in a marathon 6-0, 4-6, 5-7, 6-1, 6-4 win. 

There were also wins for 14th seed Nick Kyrgios, who beat Horacio Zeballos 7-5, 6-4, 6-4, and 21st seed Ivo Karlovic, who triumphed over Donald Young 6-4, 7-6 (4), 6-4. 

Earlier in the day, second seed Andy Murray, sixth seed Kei Nishikori and eighth seed Dominic Thiem booked their spots in the third round. 

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