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Stars progress in Monte Carlo

Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Stanislas Wawrinka dropped just 10 games between them as they made the Monte-Carlo Masters third round.

Eight-times winner Nadal safely made it through with a straight-sets victory over Russian qualifier Teymuraz Gabashvili.

The 27-year-old world number one claimed a 6-4 6-1 triumph in an hour and 12 minutes to move above American Brian Gottfried (679) into 12th place on the all-time wins list.

The top seed, who won here every year from 2005 to 2012 and was beaten by Novak Djokovic in last year's final, was trailing to Gabashvili before coming back to take the first set 6-4 and comfortably saw out the second to advance to the third round.

Earlier, Federer marked his return to the tournament - his first appearance since 2011 - via a wild card as he saw off Czech Radek Stepanek 6-1 6-2 in just under an hour.

The three-times finalist here admitted he was surprised with his easy progress, and told atpworldtour.com: "I'm a bit surprised how well it went. Then again, it's hard to serve through the opponent.

"I was able to get a lot of returns back into play. On clay, when you have the upper hand from the baseline, it's kind of hard to get out of it.

"I think that's kind of how it was for Radek today. I had a good start to both sets, then I was solid on my own service games.

"The next thing you know, you're in the lead and you can hit freely. It was clearly a good match to start my clay-court campaign."

Wawrinka, seeded one place ahead of his fellow Swiss player Federer at number three, had the most comfortable outing of the trio as he crushed Croatia's Marin Cilic 6-0 6-2 in under 46 minutes.

Wawrinka broke five times and dropped just six points on his own serve, and said: "I expected a more difficult or more complicated first round against him. But I know that physically if I feel good, then I am able to put a lot of pressure on the opponent."

Italian Fabio Fognini set up a third-round clash with Jo-Wilfried Tsonga after seeing off Roberto Bautista-Agut of Spain 7-6 (8/6) 6-4 in one hour and 44 minutes.

But Nadal's win was otherwise indicative of a day of Spanish success as his compatriots Tommy Robredo, Nicolas Almagro, Guillermo Garcia-Lopez and Pablo Carreno Busta all won.

Robredo and Almagro, seeded 11th and 15th, saw off their respective French opponents Julien Benneteau and Nicolas Mahut, while Garcia-Lopez upset 17th seed Alexander Dolgopolov.

Most notable, though, was Carreno Busta's 6-3 7-6 (8/6) win over France's Gael Monfils, the lucky loser adding to his win over Ivan Dodig on Tuesday.

There were defeats, though, for Albert Ramos - 4-6 6-3 6-4 to 12th seed Grigor Dimitrov - and Pablo Andujar, beaten 7-6 (7/5) 5-7 6-4 in almost three hours by Italy's Andreas Seppi.

Lukas Rosol of the Czech Republic defeated French qualifier Michael Llodra 6-4 6-4 in just over an hour, and Canadian eighth seed Milos Raonic beat Yen-Hsun Lu 6-7 (4/7) 6-2 6-1 to advance.