Djokovic, Nadal tested but advance in California

Wed Mar 16, 2016 1:12am EDT
Email This Article |
Share This Article
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
| Print This Article | Single Page
[-] Text [+]

(Reuters) - World number one Novak Djokovic broke his opponent late in both sets to eke out a 7-5 7-5 third round victory over an upset-minded Philipp Kohlschreiber on Tuesday as the Serb continued his BNP Paribas Open title defense in California.

One day after world number two Andy Murray was surprisingly knocked out of competition, Djokovic had no such letdown despite suffering a bit of a wobble towards the end of the match.

Djokovic broke serve to lead 4-2 in the second set and squandered four match points in the ninth game before handing back the break to the German world number 30.

The next two games went with serve with Djokovic ensuring the contest would not go to a deciding set when he sealed victory on his fifth match point in breaking his opponent for the fourth time in the match to advance to the round of 16.

He next plays Spaniard Feliciano Lopez for a place in the quarter-finals.

Elsewhere, Rafael Nadal gained a modicum of revenge over Spanish compatriot Fernando Verdasco with a 6-0 7-6(9) triumph.

Having lost to Verdasco in the opening round of the Australian Open in January, Nadal dominated early before digging in late in the second set to put the match away, saving five set points in the tie-break to triumph after falling 6-3 behind.

"I feel lucky to win the tie-break but at the same time, I played well with not many mistakes as I went for the points," said Nadal, who is looking for his fourth title at Indian Wells.

"I lost matches similar to this one in Australia, in Buenos Aires and in Rio de Janeiro, so it's important for me to win matches like this."   Continued...

Novak Djokovic of Serbia waves after withdrawing from his match against Feliciano Lopez of Spain at the ATP Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships February 25, 2016. REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah