Paris: Day 8 at French Open saw nine-time champion Rafael Nadal and title-holder Novak Djokovic surge into the French Open quarter-finals for a record-equalling 11th time on Sunday, but reigning women's champion Garbine Muguruza crashed out in the last 16. As we near the quarterfinal phase of the championship, here are five matches to watch on day nine at Roland Garros on Monday.
Murray faces Russian roulette
World No 1 Andy Murray, the 2016 runner-up, faces Russia's Karen Khachanov who is in the last-16 of a Slam for the first time and has held serve for 48 consecutive games. Murray is looking to record a milestone 650th Tour-level match-win and earn a place in the quarter-finals for the seventh time. Khachanov, 21, is playing just his third Grand Slam event having made his debut at a major at the 2016 US Open. The World No 53 is looking to become the first player to reach the last eight on his Roland Garros debut since Rafael Nadal in 2005.
Head-to-head: First meeting
Wawrinka, Monfils in friendly fire
2015 champion and third seed Stan Wawrinka faces the last Frenchman in the draw with their series level at 2-2. The two players, close friends off the court, have never met on clay. Wawrinka and Gael Monfils are two one of the eight men aged 30 or over to reach the round of 16 from the 49 who started in the main draw –- the joint-highest number of 30-somethings to reach the last 16 at a Grand Slam in the Open Era. Monfils is looking to reach the quarter-finals for the fifth time.
Head-to-head: Series level at 2-2
Nishikori fighting for Asian pride
Kei Nishikori survived a five-set battle to down South Korea's Hyeon Chung and is bidding Monday to reach his seventh Grand Slam quarter-final and take sole ownership of the all-time record for most Grand Slam last-eight appearances by a Japanese man. He is is aiming to reach the quarter-final in Paris for the second time. In 2015, he lost to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in five sets. Fernando Verdasco, 33, stunned highly-rated ninth seed Alexander Zverev in the first round. The Spanish left-hander is bidding to reach the quarter-finals for the first time at his 14th Roland Garros.
Head-to-head: Nishikori leads 3-2
Anderson eyes African chance
Kevin Anderson is bidding to reach his second Grand Slam quarter-final and become just the sixth South African man to reach multiple Slam quarter-finals after Johan Kriek (6), Wayne Ferreira (5), Cliff Drysdale (3), Kevin Curren (2) and Ray Moore (2). 31-year-old Anderson’s best Grand Slam performance is reaching the quarter-finals at the 2015 US Open. He faces former US Open champion Marin Cilic, the seventh seed, who has been making his trademark quiet progress through the draw. Cilic is looking to become the first Croatian man to reach the Roland Garros quarter-finals since Mario Ancic and Ivan Ljubicic in 2006.
Head-to-head: Cilic leads 5-1
French feud goes public
Alize Cornet and Caroline Garcia, French compatriots but barely on speaking terms after a bitter feud, clash for a place in the quarter-finals. Cornet admits that her relationship with Garcia has virtually broken down. "I think that the relationship is not very good," said 27-year-old. "I think she may have a grudge against us, so she's not ready to talk with me, so I don't think that it will be good to talk to her, because we are playing against each other." The feud stems from Garcia's decision not to play Fed Cup earlier this year. Cornet is playing her 45th Slam -- the most appearances among active players without reaching a quarter-final.
Head-to-head: First meeting
Published Date: Jun 05, 2017 03:17 pm | Updated Date: Jun 05, 2017 03:17 pm