Three years later and Roger Federer is back winning on clay again

Roger Federer on clay PA

Roger Federer marked his return to clay-court action with a solid win over Richard Gasquet in the second round of the Madrid Open.

Having taken a hiatus from the red dirt in order to prolong his career, Federer opted to have another go at the French Open this year and picked the Madrid event as his warm-up tournament.

And he is up and running on clay in 2019 as he beat the Frenchman 6-2, 6-3 in 52 minutes, hitting 28 winners to 20 unforced errors, at the Manolo Santana Court.

The first set took just 23 minutes with Federer breaking in games two and eight while a single break of serve came in game eight of the second set.

Ninth seed Marin Cilic had more of a battle on his hand as the former US Open winner came from a set down to beat Jan-Lennard Struff 4-6, 6-3, 6-4.

The retiring David Ferrer prolonged his career as the Spanish veteran beat compatriot Roberto Bautista Agut 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 to earn himself a second-round clash against third seed Alexander Zverev.

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