PARIS, (Reuters) – Defending champion Garbine Muguruza departed Roland Garros in tears after losing to home favourite Kristina Mladenovic in the fourth round, but men’s champion Novak Djokovic eased into the French Open quarter-finals yesterday.
Djokovic raised his game to see off Spaniard Albert Ramos-Vinolas 7-6(5) 6-1 6-3 and set up a mouth-watering clash with in-form sixth seed Dominic Thiem of Austria, who beat Argentine Horacio Zeballos 6-1 6-3 6-1 earlier in the day.
Mladenovic overcame her struggles on serve to eliminate Muguruza 6-1 3-6 6-3 despite making an astonishing 16 double faults, leaving last year’s winner complaining about the fiercely partisan crowd on Court Suzanne Lenglen.
Fourth-seed Rafa Nadal continued his ominous march towards a potential 10th French Open title by beating compatriot Roberto Bautista Agut 6-1 6-2 6-2 to reach the last eight.
Venus Williams lost her fourth-round clash against Timea Bacsinszky 5-7 6-2 6-1, marking the second year in a row that she has fallen to the Swiss at Roland Garros.
Fifth-seed Milos Raonic chalked up an eye-popping 84 unforced errors as he lost 4-6 7-6(2) 6-7(6) 6-4 8-6 to claycourt specialist Pablo Carreno Busta in the fourth round.
Caroline Wozniacki stayed on course to win her first grand slam title, with the Dane beating Russian eighth seed Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-1 4-6 6-2 to reach the quarter-finals for the first time since 2010.
Also in the quarters is Latvian teenager Jelena Ostapenko, who beat Samantha Stosur 2-6 6-2 6-4, although the Australian revealed after the match that she is carrying a hand injury that had hampered her serve and forehand.
Injury also struck down France’s Richard Gasquet, who was forced to retire due to a thigh problem midway through his third-round clash with compatriot Gael Monfils.
Third seed Stan Wawrinka of Switzerland’s stands between Monfils and a place in the quarter-finals.
Here are the highlights from day eight of the French Open tennis championships yesterday:
DJOKOVIC SETS UP QUARTER-FINAL CLASH WITH THIEM
– Defending champion Novak Djokovic beat Spaniard Albert Ramos-Vinolas 7-6(5) 6-1 6-3 to advance to the quarter-finals.
– The Serbian second seed will meet Austrian Dominic Thiem in the next round.
THIEM RACES INTO QUARTERS
– Sixth seed Dominic Thiem raced into the quarter-finals with a 6-1 6-3 6-1 victory over Argentine Horacio Zeballos.
VENUS BOWS OUT AFTER LOSING TO BACSINSZKY
– American Venus Williams’ run at the French Open ended in a 5-7 6-2 6-1 fourth-round defeat by Switzerland’s Timea Bacsinszky.
– Venus also lost to the Swiss at the same stage at Roland Garros last year.
MLADENOVIC BEATS DEFENDING CHAMP MUGURUZA
– France’s Kristina Mladenovic reached the quarter-finals after beating defending champion and fourth seed Garbine Muguruza of Spain 6-1 3-6 6-3.
– Mladenovic produced an astonishing 16 double faults but hit four aces and 23 winners.
SPAIN’S CARRENO BUSTA OUSTS FIFTH SEED RAONIC
– Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta beat fifth seed Milos Raonic of Canada 4-6 7-6(2) 6-7(6) 6-4 8-6 and will meet compatriot Rafa Nadal in the quarter-finals.
OSTAPENKO INTO QUARTERS AFTER STOSUR UPSET
– Latvia’s Jelena Ostapenko beat Australian Samantha Stosur 2-6 6-2 6-4 to reach the quarter-finals of a grand slam for the first time.
– Ostapenko faces 11th seed Caroline Wozniacki next.
MONFILS WINS ALL-FRENCH BATTLE AS GASQUET RETIRES
– Gael Monfils advanced to the fourth round after compatriot Richard Gasquet retired midway through the third set with a thigh injury.
– Monfils won 7-6(5) 5-7 4-3 and will face third seed Stan Wawrinka next.
NADAL POWERS INTO QUARTERS
– Fourth seed Rafa Nadal marched into the quarter-finals with a regulation 6-1 6-2 6-2 victory over fellow Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut.
– Nadal, who turned 31 on Saturday, hit 31 winners and served four aces.
ISNER BOWS OUT AFTER DEFEAT BY KHACHANOV
– Russia’s Karen Khachanov beat big-serving American John Isner 7-6(1) 6-3 6-7(5) 7-6(3) and will meet world number one Andy Murray in the fourth round.
– Isner bows out as the player with the most aces at Roland Garros so far. He served up 14 in his match with Khachanov to take him to 66 for the tournament, eight more than second-placed Kevin Anderson of South Africa.
WOZNIACKI INTO QUARTERS AFTER BEATING KUZNETSOVA
– Women’s 11th seed Caroline Wozniacki beat eighth seed Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia 6-1 4-6 6-2 in the fourth round.
MARTIC TO MEET FIFTH SEED SVITOLINA
– Croatia’s Petra Martic will face women’s fifth seed Elina Svitolina in the fourth round after beating 17th seed Anastasija Sevastova 6-1 6-1.
– Svitolina beat Poland’s Magda Linette 6-4 7-5.
PLISKOVA ADVANCES AFTER BEATING WITTHOEFT
– Women’s second seed Karolina Pliskova beat Germany’s Carina Witthoeft 7-5 6-1 to advance to the round of 16. She will face Paraguay’s Veronica Cepede Royg next.
NISHIKORI DOWNS CHUNG IN THIRD ROUND
– Eighth seed Kei Nishikori of Japan beat South Korea’s Chung Hyeong 7-5 6-4 6-7(4) 0-6 6-4 after their third-round encounter resumed on Sunday.
– Nishikori plays Spanish veteran Fernando Verdasco in the next round.