Nadal continues French Open march

Nadal continues French Open march

DEFENDING champion Rafael Nadal easily beat Richard Gasquet once again, reaching the fourth round of the French Open with a crushing 6-3 6-2 6-2 win on Sunday morning (AEST).

The 36-year-old Williams set up that showdown by making only three unforced errors in the opening set against Goerges, 12 in all.

Nadal has been his usual unstoppable self at Roland-Garros so far, sweeping aside both Simone Bolelli and Guido Pella in straight sets despite both those opponents giving good accounts of themselves.

A brilliant shot which also summed up Gasquet's career: exquisite talent, including one of the best backhands in tennis, but little end product.

The 16-time Grand Slam champion and Frenchman Gasquet were both highly-regarded as youngsters, but Nadal has utterly dominated their rivalry and hasn't even dropped a set to his fellow 31-year-old since 2008.

Nadal, who lost only two points in the first five games against Gasquet, will next play Germany's world number 70 Maximilian Marterer, who beat Estonian lucky loser Jurgen Zopp 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 after knocking out rising star Denis Shapovalov in the second round.

However, things got complicated at 5-0 as Gasquet won three games in a row, a service break included, but world No. 1 Nadal halted his opponent's revival in the next game.

Alexander Zverev already has played a pair of five-setters. "I think sometimes you have a good day and sometimes you have a bad day, and for sure it wasn't a good day", she said, "I couldn't really imagine myself playing so well on the clay".

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"I don't know what the others think".

"What I know is I go to the court, and I know that I could very well lose".

"When I left the match, I was with my father at the time, I said, "he's going to win and he might win a lot of Grand Slams behind that because he was incredible", remembered Gasquet. I can win, I can lose.

Third-seeded Garbine Muguruza of Spain has crushed Samantha Stosur 6-0, 6-2 to advance to the fourth round of the French Open. He'll next face No. 11seed Diego Schwartzman, a 7-5 6-3 6-3 victor against Borna Coric.

The 2016 champion at Roland Garros lost her serve just once to the Australian, who won the 2011 US Open and made the semifinals in Roland Garros in 2016, 2012 and 2009. Sloane Stephens advanced too, but the 10th-seeded American had a much more hard time beating Italy's Camila Giorgi 4-6 6-1 8-6. Nadal wins 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 in the third round. A Stanford graduate who once ranked No. 1 in the country in USTA Boys' 16s singles and doubles, Scott and his partner Casey Dellacqua defeated the No. 1 seeds in the French mixed final, 7-6, 4-6, (10-7).

Croatia's Marin Cilic, the third seed, came through with no fuss 6-3 6-2 6-4 against American Steve Johnson.

Mischa Zverev couldn't keep up with his younger brother, ending their bid to become the first siblings in 27 years to reach the fourth round at the same grand slam tournament. Cilic reached the final at Wimbledon past year and at the Australian Open in January.

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