10 May 2012

Federer just beats Canadian

12:36 pm on 10 May 2012

The Swiss tennis star Roger Federer had to use all his guile and experience to battle back from a set down to beat Canadian Milos Raonic in the second round of the Madrid Open.

After an opening round bye at the Masters claycourt event, the world number three was playing his first match since the end of March and only just edged out the big-serving 21-year-old, who hit 21 aces.

Rafael Nadal made much smoother progress into the last 16, dispatching former world number three Nikolay Davydenko 6-2 6-2 before joining widespread criticism of the unfamiliar blue courts, a controversial innovation at this year's tournament.

Nadal's great rival Novak Djokovic slammed organisers and the ATP after his laboured second-round win, saying centre court at the futuristic Magic Box arena was too slippery and complaining that players' concerns were being ignored.

Nadal echoed the world number one's gripes and called for the traditional red clay to be reinstated next year.

Officials argue that the blue courts make it easier for TV viewers to follow the yellow balls.