Roger Federer
Roger Federer of Switzerland rises in the air as he hits a smash to Leonardo Mayer of Argentina during their first round match at the U.S. Open Championships tennis tournament in New York, September 1, 2015. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Roger Federer progressed through to the second round of the 2015 US Open after beating Leonardo Mayer, 6-1 6-2 6-2 on the first day of action at Flushing Meadows. Federer will clash against unseeded Steve Darcis in the next round in the Swiss’ bid to win his sixth US Open title.

Federer, who failed to win a major title since winning the 2012 Wimbledon, only lost five games in his opening round match against Mayer, which also marked the first meeting for both players in a grand slam event. The pair met played their first match on tour last year on the hard courts of Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) World Tour Masters 1000 event in Shanghai, where Federer won, 7-5 3-6 7-6.

Making his 16th US Open appearance and with a 72-10 record in the tournament, the 17-time grand slam champion only needed a little over an hour to extend his winning streak over the 34th-ranked Mayer. Federer, Novak Djokovic, and Andy Murray are frontrunners to lift the US Open trophy this year.

Up next for Federer is Darcis of Belgium, who advanced after his opponent Marcos Baghdatis was forced to retire in the opener 6-7 6-3 6-2 3-1. This is the first time that Federer and the 66th-ranked Darcis will meet on tour. The 17-time Swiss grand slam champion had only lost once in his last 17 matches, which came during the finale of the 2015 Wimbledon Championships when Novak Djokovic denied him an eighth trophy at the All England Club.

The right-hander is 5-0 on hardcourt, claiming an unprecedented seventh title at the Western & Souther Open in Cincinnati by beating Djokovic in the fina,l 7-6 6-3. Djokovic also advanced following an easy win over Joao Souza, 6-1 6-1 6-1. The Serb will play Andreas Haider-Maurer in the second round.

Darcis is the player who upset Rafael Nadal in the first round of the 2013 Wimbledon, ending Nadal 22-match winning streak then. It was also the first time that the former World No. 1 was eliminated in the first round of a grand slam tennis tournament.

The 31-year-old Belgian is 9-9 this season. Darcis won only five of his last 10 matches. Darcis last played in the hard courts of the 2015 Winston-Salem Open.

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