Nadal and Djokovic reach French open quarter-finals
Rafael Nadal took another step towards taking back his French Open title by beating Brazilian Thomaz Bellucci 6-2 7-5 6-4.
The Spaniard has his serve broken four times but was not seriously troubled by Bellucci, winning the match in straight sets.
The world number two goes on to face Nicolas Almagro in the final eight. Almagro dispatched another Spaniard in the previous round, Fernando Verdasco.
Novak Djokovic also claimed a place in the last eight against Jurgen Melzer.
Third seeded Djokovic beat unseeded Robby Ginepri of the United States 6-4 2-6 6-1 6-2, meanwhle, Melzer overcame Russican Teimuraz Gabashvili.
Nadal managed to put past errors behind him by going a stage further than he achieved in last year’s tournament, where he was knocked out in the fourth round by Robin Soderling, notching up his first defeat in five visits.
"I played probably my best match today in the tournament," he said.
"My objectives are still very high and very demanding but all matches are complicated.
"All the players are difficult to play against and It’s very important for me to do well considering what’s happened to me in the past months.
"I couldn’t win last year, so it was very difficult for me. For 11 months now I’ve not really won that many matches. I know what it means and how important it is to win a tournament."
Djokovic too spoke off his performance in the tournament so far.
"I’m really not a morning person, so it took a lot of time for me to get into the rhythm and warm up basically for the match," explained Djokovic.
"I always have these kind of problems. I was just trying to get as much as energy and air for the next point.
"Generally looking, my physical feeling is right now it’s good, which is a positive fact for upcoming challenges."
Stan James give 1/3 odds that Spaniard Nadal will reclaim the French Open title this year.