Madrid - Rafael Nadal eased into the Madrid Masters last 16 as he overcame some brave resistance from world No 37 Benoit Paire before progressing 6-3, 6-4 on Wednesday.
One break in each set was enough for the 11-time Grand Slam winner as he goes in search of his fifth tournament victory since returning from a knee injury in February.
The two-time champion in Madrid broke to open up a 4-2 lead in the first set when he retrieved a Paire smash and fired a blistering forehand down the line.
Nadal was then given a code violation for taking too long to prepare himself between points at deuce in the next game, but eventually held on in that game and his following service game to take the set 6-3.
The Frenchman had a glimmer of hope with his only break point of the match with Nadal serving at 1-2 in the second, but the Spaniard again retrieved a Paire smash and the 23-year-old couldn't control his resulting volley at the net.
Nadal then upped the pressure on the Paire serve and broke through at 4-4 before serving out to move comfortably into round three.Results from the fifth day of the ATP Madrid Masters and WTA Madrid Open on Wednesday (x denotes seeding):
Rafael Nadal (ESP x5) bt Benoit Paire (FRA) 6-3, 6-4
Thomas Berdych (CZE x6) bt Jerzy Janowicz (POL) 6-7 (3/7), 6-3, 6-2
Kei Nishikori (JPN x14) bt Viktor Troicki (SRB) 7-5, 6-2
Tommy Haas (GER x13) bt Tommy Robredo (ESP) 6-3, 7-5
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA x7) bt Robin Haase (NED) 7-6(7/5), 7-6(7/1)
Kevin Anderson (RSA) bt Juan Monaco (ARG) 7-6(7/5), 3-6, 6-4
David Ferrer (ESP x4) bt Denis Istomin (UZB) 7-5, 6-2
Ekaterina Makarova (RUS) bt Victoria Azarenka (BLR x3) 1-6, 6-2, 6-3
Kaia Kanepi (EST) bt Carla Suarez Navarro (ESP) 6-3, 6-1
Varvara Lepchenko (USA) bt Julia Goerges (GER) w/o
Maria Kirilenko (RUS x13) bt Kristina Mladenovic (FRA) 6-7 (5/7), 6-1, 6-4
Angelique Kerber (GER x6) bt Svetlana Kuznetsova (RUS) 3-6, 6-4, 7-5