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Italian Open: Djokovic to face-off with Nadal for 49th time!

Last updated on: May 13, 2016 14:11 IST

The Serbian fought back from a first set bagel to storm into the quarters

Serbia's Novak Djokovic plays a return against Brazil's Thomaz Bellucci at  the Italian Open on Thursday 

IMAGE: Novak Djokovic plays a return against Brazil's Thomaz Bellucci at the Italian Open on Thursday. Photograph: Matthew Lewis/Getty Images

World number one Novak Djokovic displayed resilience and composure as he stormed back from a first set bagel to defeat Thomaz Bellucci in thrilling three sets to advance to the quarter-finals of the Italian Open in Rome on Wednesday.

The Serbian defending champion recorded 0-6, 6-3, 6-2 win over Bellucci in one of the strangest matches of his career and will next face Spanish rival Rafael Nadal for a berth in the semi-finals.

Spain's Rafael Nadal celebrates on winning match point against Australia's Nick Kyrgios

IMAGE: Spain's Rafael Nadal celebrates on winning match point against Australia's Nick Kyrgios. Photograph: Dennis Grombkowski/Getty Images

Fifth-seed Rafael Nadal also stormed into the quarter-finals of the tournament after rebounding strongly from the first-set defeat to record a 6-7, 6-2, 6-4 win over controversial Australian Nick Kyrgios.

In contrast, world number 3 Andy Murray had a relatively easy time, cruising into the quarters after registering a thumping 6-0, 6-4 win over Jeremy Chardy in a contest that lasted one hour and 17 minutes.

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