ATP

Nadal passes Federer, Zverev edges through in Montreal

By Sports Desk August 08, 2019

Rafael Nadal set a record on his way to the Rogers Cup quarter-finals, while Alexander Zverev battled through on Thursday.

Nadal, the defending champion, surpassed Roger Federer for most ATP Masters 1000 wins after brushing past Guido Pella in Montreal.

Zverev, the winner in 2017, was pushed to a final-set tie-break before edging past Nikoloz Basilashvili.

All eight quarter-finalists are seeds, who dominated to move into the last eight.

 

NADAL SURPASSES FEDERER WITH PELLA POUNDING

Top seed Nadal made it four wins from as many meetings with Pella thanks to a 6-3 6-4 victory.

The win was his 379th at ATP Masters 1000 level, moving past Federer's tally of 378.

Nadal will next face Fabio Fognini after the seventh seed got past Adrian Mannarino 6-2 7-5.

The Spanish great has been troubled by Fognini in the past, losing to the Italian in Monte Carlo earlier this year.

ZVEREV SURVIVES MAJOR TEST

Zverev, the third seed, was pushed by Basilashvili, fighting his way to a 7-5 5-7 7-6 (7-5) victory.

The German served 15 aces and 14 double faults but also created 18 break points, converting five.

Basilashvili edged Zverev in a final-set tie-break in Hamburg last month.

Zverev faces another test in the last eight, with Karen Khachanov awaiting after the Russian sixth seed overcame Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-7 (7-9) 7-5 6-3.

TREMENDOUS THIEM POWERS THROUGH

Second seed Dominic Thiem booked his spot in the quarter-finals courtesy of a 7-6 (9-7) 6-4 victory over Croatian Marin Cilic.

Thiem will face Daniil Medvedev, the Russian eighth seed having cruised past Cristian Garin 6-3 6-3.

Gael Monfils and Roberto Bautista Agut will also meet after wins over Hubert Hurkacz and Richard Gasquet respectively.

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    Now, though, it is Sandgren's turn to tackle the 20-time grand slam winner, and their clash should be competitive.

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    Sandgren repeated his 2019 Wimbledon win over Fognini to sink the Italian's hopes over four sets in Melbourne on Sunday, and Federer took the chance to watch, predicting "a tough one" next.

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    There were few signs of the jitters for Novak Djokovic against Diego Schwartzman, while Milos Raonic's relentless serving strength saw him power past 2018 finalist Marin Cilic.

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    SANDGREN FIGHTS THROUGH FOGNINI FRUSTRATION

    Sandgren traded winners and barbs with Fabio Fognini before prevailing 7-6 (7-5) 7-5 6-7 (2-7) 6-4 to seal his second Australian open quarter-final berth.

    Tempers frayed across four entertaining sets on Melbourne Arena, with the American becoming upset at his opponent's stalling tactics.

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    Federer seemed to be feeling the effects of his epic five-set victory over John Millman as Fucsovics took an early lead on Rod Laver Arena.

    However, the 38-year-old recovered in supreme style and seemed somewhere close to his best tennis at the end of a 4-6 6-1 6-2 6-2 victory.

    As the full repertoire of shots from Federer began to paint the lines, Fucsovics had little response.

    The 20-time major champion is now looking forward to a first meeting with Sandgren. "I have played a lot of tennis in my life, but never against Tennys," he said.

    DJOKOVIC POWERS PAST SCHWARTZMAN

    Djokovic produced another dominant display to dismantle Schwartzman 6-3 6-4 6-4 on Rod Laver Arena, where the world number two kept his title hopes alive.

    While Schwartzman fought hard, it was another routine outing for Djokovic - who reached his 11th Australian Open quarter-final.

    Djokovic was broken for the first time since the opening round but was never really in danger, hitting 38 winners and 31 unforced errors.

    "Today was a good test because Diego was in form, he hasn't dropped a set in three rounds," the Serbian said afterwards.

    "Obviously he can be a very dangerous opponent from the baseline if you give him time. I knew that. I stepped out on the court with a clear game plan what I need to do."

    RAONIC TAKES DOWN CILIC

    It rained aces as 32nd seed and former world number three Raonic beat former runner-up Cilic 6-4 6-3 7-5.

    Raonic progressed to his fifth quarter-final in Melbourne after firing down 35 aces and winning all of his service games in two hours and 19 minutes.

    His reward? A showdown with Serbian superstar Djokovic, who boasts a dominant 9-0 head-to-head record.

    "I'm going to have to serve well clearly, and then I think I'm going to have to get my return at a high percentage, make him play a lot of those points, and then try to be efficient on my service games," Raonic said in his news conference.

    "I think we play quite opposite from each other, and he's done a good job in the past neutralising my serve. So I have really got to focus on my things well and be the one dictating."

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