1 Jun 2010

Men's quarter-finalists found at French Open

6:20 am on 1 June 2010

Four-time champion Rafael Nadal clinched his 200th claycourt win to move into the French Open quarter-finals, but only after undergoing a tough examination by Brazil's Thomaz Bellucci.

Second seed Nadal claimed a 6-2 7-5 6-4 win over gutsy 24th seed Bellucci and will face 19th seed Nicolas Almagro who beat fellow Spaniard and 7th seed Fernando Verdasco in 4.

Nadal is bidding to become only the second man to win five or more French Open men's titles, but he was distinctly under-cooked on Court Philippe Chatrier, dropping serve four times in a match featuring 12 service breaks.

Novak Djokovic, scheduled to face Nadal in the last four, also reached the quarter-finals and is convinced that the confident way he swept past Robby Ginepri makes him a threat both to the Spaniard and champion Roger Federer.

The third seeded Serbian saw off Ginepri in 4, reeling off 12 of the last 15 games, and will now face Jurgen Melzer, who ended Russian qualifier Teimuraz Gabashvili's run with a 4 set win.

Melzer, the oldest man left in the draw at 29, became the first Austrian to make the last eight since former champion Thomas Muster in 1998.

In the other quarter-finals, top seed and defending champion Roger Federer plays 5th seed Robin Soderling and 11th seed Mikhail Youzhny plays 15th seed Tomas Berdiych.