Rafael Nadal throws down Australian Open statement in impressive four-set victory

But Nadal replicated his fast starts from sets one and two, breaking the 25-year-old at the first opportunity with a magnificent passing shot winner, crouching down to celebrate the point with a double fistpump and a loud cry of “vamos”.

He dropped just one game after losing the third set, closing out a 6-3 6-2 3-6 6-1 win shortly after midnight.

Nadal will next face the winner of the third-round clash between Adrian Mannarino and Aslan Karatsev, currently at one set all.

Karatsev shocked the tennis world when he made it to the semi-final as a qualifier last year, beating the likes of Diego Schwartzman, Felix Auger-Aliassime and Grigor Dimitrov en route, before losing to eventual-champion Novak Djokovic.

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