At 39, Feliciano Lopez is a veteran, but he can still mix with the best. In Melbourne today he went five sets to outlast Italian Lorenzo Sonego, 14 years his junior, 5-7, 3-6, 6-3, 7-5, 6-4.

And he battled back from. Two sets down to make it to the third round at the weekend.

“I love the five-setters, honestly,” Lopez said.

“I think the five-set matches bring something different to tennis, especially when they go into the fifth set, sometimes you have big matches and I honestly love them.”

Lopez was playing his 75th grand slam match in in a row. He hasn’t missed onesince the French Open in 2002.

“For me to win today I think it’s over any expectations, honestly, coming here with very short preparation.”

His reward? A third-round clash with Russian Andrey Rublev.