Nadal storms past Gasquet, advances to French Open round of 16

Russia's Maria Sharapova in action. Reuters

Russia's Maria Sharapova in action. Reuters

The pair were regarded as two of the best young players of their generation as juniors, but Nadal has won 16 Grand Slam titles while Gasquet has never reached a final at the majors. And he's now won all 16 meetings with Richard Gasquet. "Each time he is hitting the ball, you have a good picture.it is always a pleasure to shoot Rafa". Former French tennis player and 2013 Wimbledon victor stepped up to do the duties before informing Nadal, "You have a lot of fans around the world but this ball kid is your biggest fan and it's his dream to play just one ball against you...", she said.

During Nadal's on-court interview the presenter told him it was the ball boy's dream to play just one point with the Spaniard, and he happily obliged.

It promises to be a hard-hitting match, with big serves and booming forehands, when Isner meets Juan Martin del Potro in the fourth round. "He's a nice guy and, yeah, that's what I can say".

If it hadn't been for 18-time grand slam singles victor Chris Evert, Dubreuil's dream may never have come true.

"Of course I have won a lot, and it can maybe influence my opponents. He has power, so he's a unsafe opponent", said Nadal.

Del Potro next plays either ninth-seeded American John Isner or unseeded Frenchman Pierre-Hugues Herbert.

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Nadal, who is yet to lose a set from his opening three rounds, will next face Maximilian Marterer after the German had earlier defeated lucky loser Jurgen Zopp 6-2 6-1 6-4.

Marin Cilic has moved into the fourth round at a Grand Slam tournament for the 20th time, eliminating Steve Johnson of the United States 6-3, 6-2, 6-4 at the French Open. He looked the more experienced between the two players.

Unseeded Karen Khachanov of Russian Federation has reached the round of 16 for the second consecutive year, eliminating 15th-seeded Lucas Pouille of France 6-3, 7-5, 6-3 in the resumption of a suspended match. She won 12 consecutive points on her serve in one stretch.

Broadcaster ITV has all the coverage of the French Open this year, covering the Grand Slam from 9.30am-9pm every day until the latter stages. Cilic reached the final at Wimbledon a year ago and at the Australian Open in January.

In Paris, the most physically challenging major according to Rod Laver, only Rolf Gehring in 1978, Eliot Teltscher in 1979, Richard Kraijcek in 1993, Guga Kuerten in 1997, Albert Costa in 2003, Gael Monfils in 2006 and Tommy Robredo in 2013 had won three matches in a row in five sets. The big-serving Croat next faces No. 18 Fabio Fognini, who beat Kyle Edmund, 6-3, 4-6, 3-6, 6-4, 6-4.

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