Faultless Zverev strolls into Australian Open third round

MELBOURNE: Alexander Zverev put his serving woes behind him as he cruised into the third round of the Australian Open on Thursday with a dominant 7-6(5) 6-4 7-5 win over Belarusian battler Egor Gerasimov.

Seventh seed Zverev racked up an astonishing 31 double-faults in three defeats at the season-opening ATP Cup but committed none against Gerasimov while bashing nine aces and landing an encouraging 78% of his first serves at Rod Laver Arena.

Zverev wavered when serving for the match at 5-3, allowing world number 98 Gerasimov to break back and level to 5-5, but the combustible German talent wrapped up the contest soon after with a barrage of stunning forehand winners.

Zverev will play the winner of Georgia's Nikoloz Basilashvili and Spanish veteran Fernando Verdasco for a place in the fourth round.