Roger Federer was too strong (Picture: Getty Images)

Roger Federer shook off the ‘rust’ of his first two matches at the US Open to thump Britain’s last remaining hopeful in the men’s singles and book his spot in the last-16.

The world No. 3 cruised past Dan Evans in a 6-2 6-2 6-1 win after just an hour and 20 minutes in the scorching Flushing Meadows heat, in a contest that was very easy on the eye.

Federer had complained of being ‘rusty’ in the first two rounds – suggesting a lack of match play on hard courts since an agonising defeat at the hands of Novak Djokovic in the Wimbledon final was a contributing factor – but moved through the gears in his trademark Rolls Royce fashion as he motored into round four.

Evans had caused the 20-time Grand Slam champion problems in the second round of the Australian Open earlier this year but encountered a far sharper Federer and was helpless to resist his brutal combination of power, finesse and elegance.

As one ball whizzed past his head at the net and dropped sumptuously on the spot where the baseline and inner tramline meet, Evans gave a look as if to say, “what the hell do I do?”

Dan Evans was beaten (Picture: AFP/Getty Images)

Unfortunately, he didn’t come close to finding an answer, with Federer having a perfect read on his crafty game – a by product, perhaps, of training alonside the man he affectionally calls “Danny” in the build-up to the clay-court season. It appeared to serve him well as a scouting mission.

Despite the obvious gulf in class between the two, Evans was also not helped by rainy conditions on Wednesday that cost him a precious day of rest a day before this clash. Instead, he had to take care of French 25th seed Lucas Pouille in a taxing four-setter while Federer put his feet up having got the job done against Damir Dzumhur under the Arthur Ashe roof.

Federer said: ‘Maybe Danny wasn’t feeling it quite today. He played yesterday so maybe that was a competitive advantage for me. I really enjoyed it out there today.’

Evans would surely not blame this defeat on that alone but it’s an example of how the world’s elite do enjoy preferential treatment at majors. That, of course, has been well earned over the years.

Regardless, Evans can be happy with his year’s work and should climb back inside the top-50 by the end of this tournament. He is the favourite to end the season as Britain’s top-ranked player

Roger Federer was too good (Picture: AFP/Getty Images)

For Federer, there will be strong hopes of winning a sixth title in New York – and first since 2008 – particularly given Djokovic’s struggles with a shoulder problem. He will meet either David Goffin or Pablo Carreno Busta next.

Federer had started slowly in his opening two matches against Sumit Nagal and Dzumhur – falling a set behind in each – but found his range in no time as he quickly opened up a one-set lead on Evans.

The Swiss was serving well and creating multiple opportunities behind his opponent’s serve, looking far more comprotable in the sweltering conditions.

Evans dug himself out of a hole to hold for 1-1 to start the second set but was broken to love in his next. The British No. 2 couldn’t hide his bewilderment as Federer continued to land balls plum on the line.

Two sets and a break down, the writing was on the wall for Evans and while he did clinch one back, he couldn’t halt the five-time champion.





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