Daniil Medvedev launched his bid for a maiden Australian Open title on Tuesday with a 6-1, 6-4, 7-6 (3) romp over Swiss battler Henri Laaksonen.

US Open champion Medvedev, favourite to win at Melbourne Park in the wake of Novak Djokovic’s deportation, was in cruise control for two sets against World No. 91 Laaksonen before being dragged into a proper dog-fight in the third set.

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Finland-born Laaksonen produced scintillating tennis to keep in touch with Medvedev in the tiebreak before faltering with a pair of unforced errors that gave the Russian three match points.

Medvedev sealed the win on the first of them and will play the winner of Nick Kyrgios and Liam Broady for a place in the third round.

"I like pressure," Medvedev said.

"Always want to do better than I did last year (but) it's not going to be easy."

No. 5 Andrey Rublev beat Gianluca Mager 6-3, 6-,2 6-2, No. 11 Jannik Sinner beat Joao Sousa 6-4, 7-5, 6-1, No. 13 Diego Schwartzman beat Filip Krajinovic 6-3, 6-4, 7-5 to advance along with No. 15 Roberto Bautista Agut and No. 27 Marin Cilic.

(With inputs from AP)