Sports

Andy Murray tops del Potro in Paris

Andy Murray tops del Potro in Paris

World number one Andy Murray says that Juan Martin del Potro provided stiff opposition at the French Open.

Murray came through a titanic opening set 10-8 in the tie-break and immediately broke a tired Del Potro at the start of the second. However, the quarter-finals will feature Rafael Nadal versus Roberto Bautista-Agut and Novak Djokovic versus Albert Ramos-Vinolas in the men's category.

Weary Del Potro, who beat Murray in the Davis Cup semi-finals a year ago to avenge his defeat in the Olympics final, managed just 11 points in the 3rd set.

The match hinged on a first set that was so tight that in the end it took a split decision from two of the officials before it could finally be given to Murray.

Such an impressive victory over an opponent of Del Potro's calibre will come as a huge boost to Murray, who came into the second grand slam tournament of the season in wretched form but looked back to something approaching his best here in recording a 7-6 (10/8) 7-5 6-0 victory in just under three hours. It's been 15 years since Williams' first and only other visit to the French Open; her sister Serena Williams came second place in the 2016 Women's French Open, but sat out the competition this year due to her pregnancy. The three-time Grand Slam champion clinched victory on his third match point when Fognini swiped a forehand return into the net. The 18-year-old from California did so when play resumed Saturday and went a break up early in the third set. 'That's very positive, because I wasn't doing that for the last few tournaments and now in the last couple of matches I have done it, turned them around'. The 2015 champion won the tiebreak 7-2, before going on to win 6-0, 6-2 in two sets to follow. He retrieved it when Murray served for the set in the 10th game before handing the advantage straight back.

He out-scored the powerful Argentine with 41 winners to 35, all the while mixing up his game with deft drop shots and sharp volleys.

The beaten finalist at Roland Garros previous year doubled his lead after needing two opportunities to serve out the second set, before a faultless display in the third subdued a leg-weary Del Potro. Del Potro's last hurrah came at 15-40 with Murray serving for the match, but the Briton hit a victor onto the baseline and the job was done, 6-0.

"I couldn't believe that set, that I lost that set, because I had many opportunities to win", del Potro said.

"It was tough, because I think [Del Potro] was playing much better than me in the first set".

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"I think the crowd is going to be excited", Cornet said.

The 2014 U.S. Open champion next faces either Britain's Kyle Edmund or big-serving South African Kevin Anderson.

The seventh-seeded Croatian tripled the Spanish left-hander's victor output-31 to 10-and broke serve seven times in a one hour, 47-minute victory.

Marin Cilic is through to the fourth round of the French Open after swatting aside Spanish veteran Feliciano Lopez 6-1, 6-3, 6-3.

Agnieszka Radwanska, the women's ninth seed, was eliminated in her third-round matchup on Saturday.

"You work all year for moments like this", said Cornet, who was tearful in her interview on court. "I feel so good on this center court".

Garcia overcame Taiwan's Hsieh Su-wei 6-4, 4-6, 9-7.

SPOILSPORT Andy Murray denied tennis fans a classic match - by ruthlessly disposing of Juan Martin Del Potro.


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