Jan 31 (Reuters) - Switzerland took advantage of Novak Djokovic’s absence to open a 2-0 lead over last year’s runners-up Serbia in their Davis Cup tie on Friday with Roger Federer and Stanislas Wawrinka winning their singles rubbers.
Two months after their defeat by Czech Republic in the final, Serbia fielded a second-string team who were quickly put under pressure in their World Group first round clash.
Federer beat 268th-ranked Ilija Bozoljac 6-4 7-5 6-2 while Wawrinka, fresh from winning his maiden grand slam title at the Australian Open, eased past Dusan Lajovic 6-4 4-6 6-1 7-6(7).
France got off to a flier against Australia with Jo-Wilfried Tsonga beating gutsy veteran Lleyton Hewitt 6-3 6-2 7-6(2) after Richard Gasquet outclassed Nick Kyrgios 7-6(3) 6-2 6-2.
The Czechs, who retained the Davis Cup in November, were losing 1-0 to the Netherlands in Ostrava, with Radek Stepanek going down in five sets to Robin Haase before Tomas Berdych plays Igor Sijsling later on Friday. (Reporting by Toby Davis; Editing by Ken Ferris)