Djokovic, Nadal and Alcaraz roll into final 16 at French Open

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Serbia's Novak Djokovic returns to Slovakia's Alex Molcan during their men's singles match on day four of the Roland-Garros Open tennis tournament at the Court Suzanne-Lenglen in Paris on May 25, 2022. (Photo by Thomas SAMSON / AFP)

Serbia’s Novak Djokovic returns to Slovakia’s Alex Molcan throughout their males’s singles match on day 4 of the Roland-Garros Open tennis match on the Court docket Suzanne-Lenglen in Paris on Could 25, 2022. (AFP)

PARIS, France  – Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal closed in Friday on a blockbuster conflict on the French Open as each reached the final 16, whereas 19-year-old Carlos Alcaraz grew to become the youngest man to make the second week in Paris since 2006.

Reigning champion Djokovic and 13-time winner Nadal are heading in the right direction to satisfy within the quarter-finals, with the Spaniard seeded outdoors the highest 4 at Roland Garros for simply the second time.

World primary Djokovic strolled to a 6-3, 6-3, 6-2 win over Slovenia’s Aljaz Bedene and Nadal eased previous Dutch twenty sixth seed Botic van de Zandschulp 6-3, 6-2, 6-4.

“I’m at all times very motivated when I get on the court docket, with the will to supply my greatest stage every time. It’s not at all times potential to do it, however right now it was excellent,” stated Djokovic.

The 35-year-old Serb is aiming to turn out to be the oldest males’s singles champion in Paris within the Open period as he chases a record-equalling twenty first Grand Slam title.

Subsequent up for Djokovic, who was additionally French Open champion in 2016, is a match-up with Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman, the fifteenth seed.

Nadal, the 21-time main champion, improved his report at Roland Garros to 108-3 after seeing off 2021 US Open quarter-finalist Van de Zandschulp.

He has now reached at the very least the fourth spherical in 17 of 18 visits to Roland Garros, apart from 2016 when he withdrew within the third spherical with a wrist damage.

“At present has been an excellent check and really constructive check, as a result of I used to be capable of play my greatest match of the match to date, with none doubt,” stated Nadal.

The Spaniard had a break level for 5-0 within the third set, however Van de Zandschulp refused to roll over, successful 4 of the next 5 video games earlier than Nadal put away his second match level, having saved a break level in between the 2.

“You at all times really feel slightly bit the nerves to complete the match, so I’m joyful to be by means of in straight units,” stated Nadal, who performs Canadian ninth seed Felix Auger-Aliassime for a spot within the final eight.

In a twist to that conflict, Toni Nadal, the uncle and former coach of the Spaniard, is now working with Auger-Aliassime.

Alcaraz, Zverev transfer on

Alcaraz gained revenge towards the one man to beat him on clay this yr, defeating US twenty seventh seed Sebastian Korda 6-4, 6-4, 6-2 within the night session.

The Spanish teenage star is the youngest man within the Roland Garros fourth spherical since Djokovic 16 years in the past.

“I’m making an attempt to have enjoyable on the market. I simply get pleasure from each single second. I really like taking part in tennis,” stated Alcaraz, who saved a match level towards countryman Albert Ramos-Vinolas within the earlier spherical.

He has received 20 of 21 matches on clay this season and next faces twenty first seed Karen Khachanov. The Russian knocked out Cameron Norrie in 4 units because the Tenth-seeded Briton grew to become the highest-ranked participant to fall.

Alexander Zverev, the third seed and 2021 semi-finalist, ended the run of American Brandon Nakashima, successful 7-6 (7/2), 6-3, 7-6 (7/5).

The German Olympic champion, who additionally saved a match level in spherical two, next takes on Bernabe Zapata Miralles, the 131st-ranked Spaniard who downed John Isner in 5 units.

Amanda Anisimova, the twenty seventh seed and a 2019 semi-finalist, superior to the final 16 as injury-plagued Karolina Muchova retired down 6-7 (7/9), 6-2, 3-0 after falling and twisting her ankle halfway by means of the second set.

Final yr’s US Open runner-up Leylah Fernandez beat Olympic champion Belinda Bencic of Switzerland 7-5, 3-6, 7-5, whereas Aliaksandra Sasnovich defeated three-time Grand Slam winner Angelique Kerber 6-4, 7-6 (7/5).

Coco Gauff, the youngest participant left within the French Open, made the final 16 with a straight-sets win over Kaia Kanepi, the oldest girl within the match at 36.

Sloane Stephens, runner-up in 2018, ended the run of French teenager Diane Parry in straight units, whereas Swiss twenty third seed Jil Teichmann overcame two-time former Australian Open winner Victoria Azarenka 4-6, 7-5, 7-6 (10/5).

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