Rafael Nadal blows away Nikoloz Basilashvili to reach French Open fourth round

Hope Soto
June 3, 2017

Defending champion Novak Djokovic struggled through to the next round at the French Open as Rafael Nadal continued his quest for a 10th title in style.

"I won winning with that score against a player that already won against (Gilles) Simon and (Victor) Troicki, so can not say another thing".

Forced out of the tournament after the third round previous year, Nadal is bidding to become the first player in the Open era to win 10 majors at the same event.

Djokovic will now lock horns with Diego Schwartzman of Argentina for a place in the fourth round.

The 21st-seeded Isner entered the tournament as the ATP Tour leader in aces this season, and he had 21 in his 6-3, 7-6 (3), 7-6 (2) win over Lorenzi.

Dominic Thiem had comforting words for Steve Johnson after beating him in the third round of the French Open.

"She was just playing good, a lot of confidence. And I'm happy that I'm through in three sets".

The second seed, now joint third on the all-time list for most wins at Roland Garros with 58, was on the back foot for much of the match, allowing the Argentine to dictate the pace from the baseline. Basilashvili looked like he might be saved by the weather as thunder rumbled overhead late in the third set.

"I went on court thinking it was going to be a tough match ..."

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The Serbian was given a code violation and two time violations, and also made 55 unforced errors in an unpredictable contest that stretched out to three hours and 18 minutes on Court Philippe Chatrier.

"The score is quite embarrassing but I have to accept it", he told his post-match media conference. Basilashvili hopes to make the fourth round of a grand slam for the first time in his career.

The Spaniard wrapped up the set by winning the next game and clinched victory with a storm threatening to interrupt play.

It was Nadal's 100th best-of-five-sets match on clay.

"It was really hard for me previous year", Nadal, who had to withdraw because of an injury in 2016, said.

"I think I played great but at the beginning of the match he was not playing bad, and I was able to produce winners, to play with no mistakes, to play very long".

Canadian fifth seed Milos Raonic also advanced to the last 16 when veteran Spaniard Guillermo Garcia-Lopez retired through injury in the second set.

Seeded winners in the women's second round: No. 4 Garbine Muguruza, No. 8 Svetlana Kuznetsova, No. 10 Venus Williams, No. 11 Caroline Wozniacki, No. 13 Kristina Mladenovic, No. 23 Sam Stosur, No. 27 Yulia Putintseva, No. 30 Timea Bacsinszky, No. 32 Zhang Shuai.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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