» Sports » French Open PIX: Nadal, Federer, Muguruza advance

French Open PIX: Nadal, Federer, Muguruza advance

Last updated on: May 29, 2019 23:51 IST
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Images from Day 4 of the 2019 French Open in Paris on Wednesday.

Brutal Nadal through to French Open third round

Rafael Nadal

IMAGE: Rafael Nadal celebrates winning his second round match. Photograph: Clive Mason/Getty Images

Rafael Nadal left German qualifier Yannick Maden no hope as he booked his ticket for the third round of the French Open in ruthless fashion with a 6-1, 6-2, 6-4 victory on Wednesday.


The defending champion, chasing a record-extending 12th title at Roland Garros, powered through the first two sets before being slightly bothered in the third.

But the second seed from Spain, who looks to become the first player to win a Grand Slam title 12 times, stayed business like when Maden broke back for 4-4 and the contest ended when the world number 114 returned wide.

"He's a good player, he had won four matches -- three in qualifications -- going into this match, he had gained confidence," an always gracious Nadal told a courtside interviewer on Court Suzanne Lenglen, where he has never lost.

Rafael Nadal

IMAGE: Rafael Nadal is aiming to become the first player to win a Grand Slam title 12 times. Photograph: Clive Mason/Getty Images

His only two defeats in 90 matches at the French Open happened on the main Court Philippe Chatrier.

"For me it is an important victory, playing here in Paris, at Roland Garros, is always incredible," the 32-year-old added.

Nadal will take on Belgian David Goffin, the 27th seed, for a place in the fourth round.

Federer into Roland Garros third round for 15th time

Roger Federer

IMAGE: Roger Federer raced to victory in just 95 minutes in his second round match. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Even during a clinically efficient win, Roger Federer still produced enough masterstrokes to have the French Open crowd purring as he moved past German qualifier Oscar Otte into the third round.

The 37-year-old, welcomed back to Roland Garros with open arms after missing the last three editions, was kept on his toes throughout the Court Philippe Chatrier contest, but raised his game when needed to prevail 6-4, 6-3, 6-4.

With perfect Swiss timing he broke serve once in each set -- in the 10th game of the first, the eighth game of the second and the ninth game of the third -- to subdue the world number 144.

Just for good measure Federer finished the one-hour 36 minute match off with a signature flourish on the Parisian clay, a glorious drop volley played with casual ease.

Third seed Federer, whose only French Open title came 10 years ago, has won his first six sets and with a favourable draw he looks in the form to mount another challenge.

Next up for the 20-times Grand Slam champion is Norway's 63rd-ranked Casper Ruud.

Tsitsipas beats tricky Bolivian Dellien

Stefanos Tsitsipas

IMAGE: Stefanos Tsitsipas in action during his second round match. Photograph: Adam Pretty/Getty Images

Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas came through a stern test against tricky Bolivian Hugo Dellien to book his place in the French Open third round for the first time.

The sixth seed eventually won an intriguing claycourt contest 4-6, 6-0, 6-3, 7-5 in front of an appreciative crowd on the stunning Court Simonne Mathieu, but it was a sweat.

Claycourt specialist Dellien, whose opening-round win was the first by a Bolivian player in a Grand Slam tournament since 1984, played a sensational 10th game to take the opening set despite needing treatment on his ankle.

Tsitsipas, 20, then took control with his aggressive all-round game but Dellien, who produced a succession of stunning drop shots, threatened to drag the match into a decider.

The world number 86 broke at the start of the fourth set, much to the annoyance of Tsitsipas who received a warning for slamming his racket into the net tape.

Dellien had the chance for a double break at 3-1 but Tsitsipas survived that mini-crisis and regained control.

It was never straightforward, though, and the crowd roared their approval when Dellien, who quit tennis in 2016 to set up an ice company, saved three match points at 4-5, the second with yet another cunning drop shot.

Tsitsipas was in no mood to be extended longer, however pleasant the surroundings of the new show court in the botanical gardens might be, and closed it out two games later with a clubbing forehand winner.

Dimitrov outlasts Cilic in heavyweight clash

Grigor Dimitrov

IMAGE: Grigor Dimitrov has never been past the third round at Roland Garros and if he is to extend his stay beyond that this year, he will have to do it the hard way. Photograph: Adam Pretty/Getty Images

Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov twice came from a set behind to outlast 11th seed Marin Cilic in a heavyweight second-round clash at the French Open on Wednesday.

The former world number three, unseeded this year at Roland Garros after falling to 46th in the rankings, produced a gutsy display laced with pure shot-making to win 6-7, 6-4, 4-6, 7-6, 6-3.

Dimitrov moved 5-2 ahead in the decider with two breaks, but Cilic was not going out without a fight and saved a match point with a booming forehand as he repaired some of the damage.

Cilic netted a backhand in the next game, however, to hand Dimitrov a notable victory.

Dimitrov has never been past the third round at Roland Garros and if he is to extend his stay beyond that this year, he will have to do it the hard way.

His next opponent is 2015 champion Stan Wawrinka.

Muguruza canters into third round

Garbine Muguruza

IMAGE: Garbine Muguruza plays a forehand during her second round match. Photograph: Clive Mason/Getty Images

Former champion Garbine Muguruza cantered into the third round of the French Open with a routine 6-4, 6-1 victory against Swede Johanna Larsson on Wednesday.

The Spaniard, seeded 19th, was kept on her toes in the opening set before motoring on in the second on Court Suzanne Lenglen.

Muguruza, who lifted the Suzanne Lenglen Cup in 2016, relied on her booming forehand throughout and wrapped it up when Larsson netted a service return.

"I'm very happy, it's another win in a Grand Slam. It's a special tournament for me," the 25-year-old, who also won Wimbledon in 2017, told a courtside interviewer.

She will face Elina Svitolina after the ninth seed advanced without hitting a ball on Wednesday when her opponent, fellow Ukrainian Kateryna Kozlova, withdrew from the tournament due to intercostal pain.

Nishikori downs Tsonga; Gasquet loses

Kei Nishikori

IMAGE: Kei Nishikori rallied back from a break down in the fourth to advance in solid fashion. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Japan's Kei Nishikori overcame a sluggish start to see off local favourite Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 4-6, 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 and reach the third round.

The seventh seed looked tight in the opening set before finding his range on Court Philippe-Chatrier, rallying back from a break down in the fourth to advance in solid fashion.

Nishikori will face Serbian 31st seed Laslo Djere for a place in the fourth round.

Another Frenchman, Richard Gasquet, was also sent packing as he slumped to a 6-2, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 defeat by Argentine Juan Ignacio Londero.

A Gasquet victory would have guaranteed a French presence in the fourth round after the 20-year-old Corentin Moutet, Londero's next opponent, downed Argentine 19th seed Guido Pella.

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