sport

Thursday at the US Open

Top seeds Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic will both grace Arthur Ashe Stadium on Thursday as they bid to book their place in the third round of the US Open.

World No 1 and two-time defending champion Williams resumes her US Open hat-trick attempt with a second-round clash against compatriot Vania King.

Five-time Flushing Meadows champion Williams roared to a 6-3 6-1 victory over Taylor Townsend in the opening round, while King overcame Italian Francesca Schiavone to book her mainstage date with the 17-time Grand Slam winner.

Belarussian 16th seed Victoria Azarenka is first up on the 22,547-capacity Arthur Ashe DecoTurf court as she takes on American Christina McHale in a precursor to home favourite Williams' second appearance.

Following Williams will be men's world No 1 Djokovic, whose quest for a second US Open crown brings him to a second-round clash with Frenchman Paul-Henri Mathieu.

British No 1 Andy Murray will then put his fitness to the test under the lights of the Arthur Ashe Stadium with a midnight (BST) clash against Germany's Matthias Bachinger.

As temperatures rose in New York eighth seed Murray, who broke his Grand Slam duck at Flushing Meadows in 2012, struggled with cramps in his legs, arms and side but eventually managed to prevail 6-3 7-6 (8) 1-6 7-5 against Robin Hasse to scrape through to the second round.

"It's frustrating to not be able to do the things that you want your body to do and that distracts you from what you should be doing on the court, which is trying to beat your opponent, not how you have to move to your backhand side or your forehand side or whatever the issue is," he said.

Wimbledon finalist Eugenie Bouchard, seeded eighth, completes Thursday's Arthur Ashe bill when she takes on Romania's Sorana Cirstea.

On the Grandstand court, women's third seed Petra Kvitova will take on Petra Cetkovska in an all-Czech affair. Their fellow countrywoman Karolina Pliskova opens proceedings on court Louis Armstrong with a clash against Serbian eighth seed Ana Ivanovic.

American teenager Madison Keys also features on Louis Armstrong as she takes on Aleksandra Krunic, while Australian 24th seed Samantha Stosur faces Kaia Kanepiof Estonia on Court 5.

Fellow women's seeds Flavia Pennetta, Carla Suarez Navarro, Ekaterina Makarova, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Casey Dellacqua will also be in action on the outside courts.

Towering American John Isner is the first man on Louis Armstrong as the 13th seed takes on Jan-Lennard Struff of Germany, before Canadian Milos Raonic – seeded fifth – clashes with Peter Gojowczyk in the court's final match of the day.

Japan's Kei Nishikori, currently ranked 11th in the world, takes on Spain's Pablo Andujar in the opening match on the Grandstand court, with ninth seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga following against Aleksandr Nedovyesov.

After second-round exits at the French Open and Wimbledon, American hopeful Sam Querrey will look to reach the third round. To do so he will have to upset 28th seed Guillermo Garcia-Lopez when they lock horns on Court 17.

Other men's seeds in action include Tommy Robredo, Philipp Kohlschreiber, Leonardo Mayer and Fernado Verdasco, who take on Simone Bolelli, Michael Llodra, Matthew Ebden and Andrey Keznetsov respectively.