Dan Evans beat Croatia's Marin Cilic in the second round ©Getty Images

Marin Cilic became the first big name casualty in the men’s singles competition at the Australian Open as the Croatian lost to Britain’s Dan Evans in Melbourne.

The seventh seed, who won the US Open in 2014, made a strong start on court three as he took the first set 6-3.

But Evans staged a superb fightback as the 26-year-old started to display the form which took him to the Sydney International final last week, as well as the brink of the world’s top 50.

The Briton ended up sealing a 3-6, 7-5, 6-3, 6-3 victory to reach the third round at the Grand Slam for the first time.

Evans compatriot and world number one Sir Andy Murray would also progress, with the five-time runner-up cruising to a 6-3, 6-0, 6-2 win over Russian teenager Andrey Rublev.

While British players were enjoying a strong day, there were mixed fortunes for the host nation’s prospects in the men’s draw as Nick Kyrigos bowed out while Bernard Tomic advanced.

Angelique Kerber celebrated her birthday in style by beating Carina Witthoeft ©Getty Images
Angelique Kerber celebrated her birthday in style by beating Carina Witthoeft ©Getty Images

Kyrigos was involved in a thrilling tie on the Hisense Arena court, with the Australian letting a two set lead slip to eventually lose 1-6, 6-7, 6-4, 6-2, 10-8 to Italy’s Andreas Seppi.

There was better fortune for home players as Tomic won 7-5, 7-6, 4-6, 7-6 against Dominican Victor Estrella Burgos to set up a meeting with Evans.

Four-time champion Roger Federer was among the other pre-tournament favourites to progress, with the Swiss star winning 7-5, 6-3, 7-6 against Noah Rubin of Austria.

Federer now faces a tough third round match against 10th seed Tomas Berdych, with the Czech having won 6-3, 7-6, 6-2 over American Ryan Harrison.

Defending women’s champion Angelique Kerber was able to celebrate her 29th birthday in style as the German secured a 6-2, 6-7, 6-2 win over her compatriot Carina Witthoeft.

Canada’s Eugenie Bouchard also progressed to the third round as the 22-year-old defeated China's Peng Shuai 7-6, 6-2.