French Open: Djokovic cruises into fourth round

Published by AAP/Tennismash

IN CONTROL: Novak Djokovic is in impressive form in Paris; Getty Images
World No.1 Novak Djokovic’s quest to win a fourth consecutive Grand Slam title is on track, comfortably advancing to the second week in Paris.

Top seed Novak Djokovic barely broke sweat as he coasted through his French Open third round against qualifier Salvatore Caruso.

Djokovic has never lost a Grand Slam match to a player ranked as low as Caruso, and never showed any sign of doing so on Saturday, breezing to a 6-3 6-3 6-2 victory against the No.147-ranked Italian.

The Serbian world No.1 is yet to drop a set in the tournament and has rarely had such an easy run into the fourth round at Roland Garros.

Djokovic, bidding to win his 16th Grand Slam title, will face Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff next.

“The conditions were very hot today, different to the days before and so tough physically,” Djokovic said after the game, under a blazing sun on the Philippe Chatrier court.

“I’m feeling motivated, I’m feeling at home.”

REPORT: Osaka, Serena both eliminated

It took Alexander Zverev all five sets again as he reached the fourth round with a 6-4 6-2 4-6 1-6 6-2 victory over Serbian Dusan Lajovic.

The German fifth seed, who fought his way through a five-set thriller in the opening round, threw away a two-set lead against the 30th seed on Court Simonne Mathieu before setting up a meeting with Fabio Fognini.

It was a highly inconsistent performance by the lanky 22-year-old Zverev, who will need to sharpen his focus against the Italian ninth seed.

“It’s a good thing to have in the back of your head. Hopefully I can continue this run. We’ll see how it goes,” the German said.

Monte Carlo champion Fognini progressed with a 7-6(5) 6-4 4-6 6-1 victory against Spanish 18th seed Roberto Bautista Agut.

Last year’s runner-up Dominic Thiem overcame a second-set blip to score a 6-3 4-6 6-2 7-5 win against Uruguay’s Pablo Cuevas on Saturday.

The fourth seed lost control at times on Court Suzanne Lenglen, but his bludgeoning forehand made the difference as he set up a meeting with local favourite Gael Monfils.

Greek sixth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas dug deep to set up a fourth-round clash against Stan Wawrinka, completing a 7-5 6-3 6-7(5) 7-6(6) victory against Serbian Filip Krajinovic.

The 20-year-old Tsitsipas completed the win after play was suspended late on Friday evening to secure his second straight last-16 appearance at a Grand Slam, just like Wawrinka who downed Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov 7-6(5) 7-6(4) 7-6(8), also over two days.

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