Andy Murray and Stan Wawrinka reach French Open quarter-finals after dominating wins
Strong French Open contenders overcome demanding weather conditions to book into the quarter-finals of the French Open, with Murray setting a British record
Strong French Open title contenders Andy Murray and holder Stan Wawrinka overcame demanding weather conditions to book into the quarter-finals of the French Open on a dreary Sunday, with Murray setting a British record.
The second seed’s 7-6 (11-9), 6-4, 6-3 win over John Isner knocked out the last US man and also put the Scot ahead of former great Fred Perry with a sixth quarter-final at Roland Garros.
Murray survived a one-hour rain interruption and finished with an ace. He will play on Tuesday against Richard Gasquet, who finally reached a Paris quarter-final on his 13th attempt, beating Kei Nishikori, 6-4, 6-2, 4-6, 6-2.
Wawrinka won his eighth match in succession after claiming the Geneva title last week, beating Viktor Troicki, 7-6 (7-5), 6-7 (9-7), 6-3, 6-2, in the cold and clammy atmosphere.
The third seed, chasing a third grand slam trophy, ran his record over his Serbian opponent to 5-0 in the three-hour challenge.
Wawrinka clocked 19 aces and 67 winners while breaking five times.
“They were tough conditions and it was not easy to play your best tennis,” Wawrinka said.
“I’m really happy with the win.
“It’s a great victory for me. I was trying to just stay calm with myself, find my game all during the match. He started to play really well the third and fourth set.”
Wawrinka will next face Albert Ramos-Vinolas, who earned one of the wins of his life with a 6-2, 6-4, 6-4 upset of eighth seed Milos Raonic.
“I’ve played him a few times already, last week (in Geneva) was a really easy match, but before that was always some tough matches,” Wawrinka said.
“He’s a really dangerous player.
“You don’t think he’s going to be that tough, but when you play against him he’s a tough player.”
Ramos-Vinolas, who had won only four grand slam matches prior to the start at Roland Garros, stunned the Canadian in two hours, 20 minutes.
Ramos-Vinolas, 28, finished off with an overhead after setting up match point with an ace to cap a victory, which complements his upset of Roger Federer last autumn in Shanghai.
Raonic’s new grass-court advisor John McEnroe was in the player box with regular coach Carlos Moya as their client went down to defeat. Neither looked particularly comfortable with the Raonic performance.
Raonic had complained of hip problems during his previous match but said that had nothing to do with his defeat. The big-hitting seed was limited to a modest seven aces while striking four double faults.
In women’s play, another Spaniard excelled as fourth seed Garbine Muguruza reached the last eight for the third year in a row as she defeated 2009 champion and 13th seed Svetlana Kuznetsova, 6-3, 6-4.
She will play No 108 Shelby Rogers, a tearful quarter-finalist after beating the 25th seed Irina Begu, 6-3, 6-4. Rogers had beaten 10th seed Petra Kvitova in the previous round.
“It gets harder every round, but I’m ready to step up to the challenge. I have nothing to lose, I have no pressure. I want to keep enjoying it and keep pushing myself,” Rogers said.
“I’m definitely outside of my comfort zone already, but I keep telling myself, ‘You belong here, you belong here.’”
Muguruza needed five match points to advance.
“Those are key moments and in key moments your senses are wide open to help your performance, to win the match,” the Spaniard said.
“Sometimes these moments can be difficult. I’ve learned to really focus on these moments.
“I had a very good win in a hard match. She was a champion here and knows how to win this tournament, being in quarter-finals again, it’s great.”