Nadal, Halep cruise into French Open 2018 quarter-finals

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Rafael Nadal and Simona Halep secured their places in the French Open 2018 quarter-finals while Serena Williams pulled out of the Grand Slam tournament due to an injury.

Nadal extended his streak of consecutive completed sets won at the French Open to 37 as he thrashed Maximilian Marterer 6-3 6-2 7-6(4).

World number one Simona Halep cruised to a 6-2 6-1 victory over Belgian Elise Mertens in the fourth round on Monday to reach the quarter-finals of the French Open for a second consecutive year.

Serena Williams pulled out of the French Open with a pectoral muscle injury, shortly before her fourth round match against Maria Sharapova.

Williams has played only a handful of matches since returning from maternity leave this year, but the three-times Roland Garros champion had looked sharp in her hunt for a 24th Grand Slam title.

“Unfortunately I’m having some issues with my pec muscle. Right now I can’t actually serve. It’s kind of hard to play,” she told a news conference.

Third seed Marin Cilic survived an almighty scare before overcoming Fabio Fognini 6-4 6-1 3-6 6-7(4) 6-3 in a marathon match lasting three hours and 37 minutes.

Cilic fired eight aces and hit 44 winners to quell the battling Italian and advance to the quarter-finals.

“I was so frustrated on some occasions,” Cilic said. “A lot of opportunities and just missing some balls. It was not easy to keep going. It was a lot of ups and downs but I was really satisfied at the end with the way I was fighting.”

Third seed Garbine Muguruza advanced to the quarter-finals after her Ukrainian opponent Lesia Tsurenko was unable to continue because of a leg injury. Tsurenko was trailing 2-0 in the opening set of their last-16 match.

In the next round, Muguruza faces an equally fresh Maria Sharapova, who came through after Serena Williams pulled out before the start of their fourth-round match because of a pectoral muscle injury.

Juan Martin del Potro joined fellow Argentine Diego Schwartzman in the quarter-finals with a comfortable 6-4 6-4 6-4 victory over American ninth seed John Isner.

The last time Argentina had more than one player in the men’s quarter-finals of Roland Garros was in 2005 when Guillermo Canas and Mariano Puerta advanced to the last eight. Puerta lost to eventual winner Rafa Nadal in the final that year.

Del Potro takes on third seed Marin Cilic in the next round.

Two-times Grand Slam champion Angelique Kerber swatted aside local favourite Caroline Garcia 6-2 6-3 to storm into the quarter-finals. The German next faces top seed Simona Halep.

Kerber and Halep have met nine times previously on the WTA Tour, with the Romanian winning five of those matches, including their last meeting at the semi-finals of the Australian Open earlier this year.

Diego Schwartzman fought back from two sets down to defeat Kevin Anderson 1-6 2-6 7-5 7-6(0) 6-2 and reach the quarter-finals at Roland Garros for the first time in his career. The Argentine prevailed in three hours and 51 minutes.

Daria Kasatkina swiftly dispatched Australian Open champion Caroline Wozniacki on Monday to move into the quarter-finals. The Russian, who led the second-seeded Dane by a set and 3-3 when play was called off on Sunday, won the first three games to seal a 7-6(5) 6-3 win.

Originally Posted on SamaaNews

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