Although he dropped his first set of the tournament, second seed Novak Djokovic confirmed the role as a title contender once more by dismissing 25th-seeded Marin Cilic in the round of 32 at French Open 2014. The Croat was the first to steal the opponent’s serve in the opener and while he managed to consolidate the break, Nole applied enough pressure on him to complete a five straight games run and take the set. The following one has proved to be more straightforward as the Serb broke on two occasions to extend the lead. In the third set Cilic again wasted a one break advantage as well as a set point at 6-5, but kept his nerves in the tie-break which he won with relative ease. The Paris crowd then witnessed a festival of break points in the fourth set with Novak being slightly more efficient to seal the clash after the second break and land a 6-3, 6-2, 6-7 (2), 6-4 victory. He will square off against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the round of 16. Backed by the home audience, the Frenchman turned in a fine performance to defeat seed number twenty-two Jerzy Janowicz 6-4, 6-4, 6-3.
“Physically I had to work very hard, because he was very aggressive,” said Djokovic. “It wasn’t easy, because once you start being passive, you lose kind of the confidence to step in. That’s what happened maybe in the end of the third and little bit of the fourth … In important moments I held my nerves and I’m very happy that I went through.”
Tenth-seeded US player John Isner and seventeenth seed Tommy Robredo fought a hard third round battle this afternoon in which both of them successfully held on to their serves throughout the opening three sets. The highest-ranked American thus claimed the first pair of tie-breaks, whilst the Spaniard grabbed the third one to reduce the deficit. The following set also progressed on serve until 5-5 when Isner converted for the first time and confirmed the break with a hold to love to beat the opponent 7-6 (13), 7-6 (3), 6-7 (5), 7-5 after three hours and twenty-three minutes on the court. He will face Tomas Berdych in the fourth round.
Milos Raonic, seed number eight, survived a five-set marathon against domestic athlete Gilles Simon. The Canadian fell one set behind twice before completing a comeback to secure a spot in the last 16 with a 4-6, 6-3, 2-6, 6-2, 7-5 triumph. He will play either Marcel Granollers or Martin Klizan next.