Paris, France – World No. 1 Novak Djokovic was an easy second-round winner Thursday at a rainy 2013 French Open.
The Serbian star dismantled promising Argentine left-hander Guido Pella 6-2, 6-0, 6-2 in 1 hour, 26 minutes at Stade Roland Garros, where rain interrupted play several times on Day 5 and forced the suspension or postponement of several matches.
The reigning Australian Open champion Djokovic was last year's French and U.S. Open runner-up. He lost to Rafael Nadal in a marquee Paris finale.
Djokovic needs a French Open title to complete a career Grand Slam.
Up next for the Serbian slugger will be 26th-seeded rising Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov, who topped 19-year-old French wild card Lucas Pouille 6-1, 7-6 (7-4), 6-1 on a wet, chilly day. The 22-year-old Dimitrov beat Djokovic on red clay at the Madrid Masters three weeks ago.
The third-seeded former No. 1 Nadal had his second-rounder against Slovak Martin Klizan postponed until Friday. The seven-time champ is seeking a fourth straight title at Roland Garros.
Thirteenth-seeded Japanese Kei Nishikori held off Slovenian Grega Zemlja 6-1, 5-7, 6-1, 6-4, while 16th-seeded German Philipp Kohlschreiber advanced via walkover when Taiwan's Yen-Hsun Lu pulled out of the draw due to an ankle injury.
Also on Day 5, rising 24th-seeded French favorite Benoit Paire played in between raindrops to beat Pole Lukasz Kubot 7-6 (7-2), 6-2, 6-4, 27th-seeded Italian Fabio Fognini foiled Czech Lukas Rosol 6-2, 7-6 (7-3), 2-6, 6-1, and Romanian veteran Victor Hanescu was leading Dmitry Tursunov 6-4, 6-6 when the oft-injured Russian retired due to a left thigh problem. Paire will tangle with Nishikori in the round of 32.
Ninth-seeded Swiss Stan Wawrinka was leading Argentine Horacio Zeballos 6-2, 7-6 (7-2), 3-3, 29th-seeded Russian Mikhail Youzhny was ahead of Argentine Federico Delbonis 6-3, 1-1, and former world No. 3 Nikolay Davydenko of Russia was leading Uzbekistan's Denis Istomin 3-2 in the first set when play was called for the day.
The third round will commence Friday, including matches for second-seeded former No. 1 great Roger Federer, fourth-seeded Spaniard David Ferrer and sixth-seeded Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. Federer will take on 30th-seeded Frenchman Julien Benneteau, who upset the Swiss icon in Rotterdam earlier this year, while Ferrer will face left-handed fellow Spaniard Feliciano Lopez and the former Aussie Open runner-up Tsonga will battle 25th-seeded compatriot Jeremy Chardy.