Nadal thumps Gasquet at Roland Garros

World No.1 and 10-time Roland Garros champion Rafael Nadal hammered Frenchman Richard Gasquet in straight set to reach the last-16 in Paris on Saturday.

In a match lasting an hour and 58 minutes, Nadal saw off Gasquet 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 to set up a meeting with Germany’s Maximilian Marterer, who beat Estonia’s Jurgen Zopp 6-2, 6-1, 6-4.

Nadal got off to the perfect start to lead 3-0 lead without dropping a point. He moved to 5-0 up for the loss of just two points.

The 29th seeded Frenchman then won three straight games to trail 3-5 but could not stop Nadal from serving out the opening set to win it 6-3.

The Spaniard started the next set off by grabbing a double break to lead 4-0 lead and shortly thereafter won the set 6-1 to lead by two sets to love.

Gasquet was facing the daunting task of trying to not only of being two sets down but has also never claimed a set off the 31-year-old Nadal in the last decade.

In the third set, Nadal never let up with his ruthless attacking game and claimed his opponents serve in the first and third games to go on and win the set and match 6-2.

The result takes their head-to-head career meetings to 16-0 in favour of Nadal.

“I think the courts are improving — that’s my feeling,” Nadal said afterwards.

“The problem the first days, the gravel, I don’t know, from the back was coming up and then was mixed with the clay, so that was the problem. That’s why it was very slippery.

“I believe that every day the courts are (getting) better and better.”

In other men’s singles results, Italian Fabio Fognini battled past 16th-seeded British number one Kyle Edmund 6-3, 4-6, 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 in a match lasting three and a half hours.

Russian Karen Khachanov broke serve in the seventh game to defeat Frenchman Lucas Pouille 6-3, 7-5, 6-3 in a rain-delayed match and will be up against German second seed Alexander Zverev next.

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