Roger Federer and Serena Williams in an exhibition for raising funds for Haiti quake
Melbourne - Three times Australian Open champion Roger Federer survived a scare against big server Igor Andreev in Rod Laver Arena, coming back from a set down to beat the Russian 4-6, 6-2, 7-6 (2), and 6-0 in 2 hours and 44 minutes.
The Swiss world number one saved three set points to close out the third set and break Andreev's spirit, before breezing through the fourth in 28 minutes to seal the win.
Federer jumps in a match against Andreev
"I just hoped that I was going to hang in there ... He was a wonderful player and it was tough," said Federer (28) in a court-side interview with Jim Courier.
"It was a fortunate third set for me today, but all in all I'm very happy with my performance."
Federer, who has never been eliminated in the first round in 11 appearances at Melbourne Park, will play Victor Hanescu of Romania who defeated Argentinian Juan Ignacio Chela 6-4, 6-3, 7-6 (2).
In the women's singles, top seed Serena Williams advances to the second round after an easy 6-2, 6-1 win over Urszula Radwanska. She will meet Petra Kvitova of Czech in the second round.
Today's First Round selected results:
22-Lleyton Hewitt (AUS) def. Ricardo Hocevar (BRA) 6-1, 6-2, 6-3
21-Tomas Berdych (CZE) def. Robin Haase (NED), 6-0, 6-3, 6-3