Novak Djokovic surges through to the quarterfinals of the Australian open to reach his 23rd consecutive Grand Slam quarterfinal with a 6-4, 7-5, 7-5 win over Gilles Muller.
Top seed Novak Djokovic is yet to drop a set in the Australian open as he looks to be only the second man to win 5 Australian Open tournaments since Roy Emerson.
The world number one will face Canadian Milos Raonic in the quarters who the Serb holds a 4-0 head to head record over.
Muller put in a number of big left hand serves but his service game dropped in the first two sets. Djokovic was in imperious form on the serve, hitting 13 aces.
The Serb was rarely troubled by Muller, who was punished when he ventured to far in court, encapsulated by a magical lob in the first set that few players could reach, never mind land just inside the base line.
Djokovic saved four break points hitting 47 winners with just 16 unforced errors to Muller’s 32.
The world number one struck a series of splendid winners to break Muller in the third set to serve for match point seeing out the game to love.
Djokovic’s win ensures that seven of the eight top seeds reach the quarterfinals. He is set to face Milos Raonic, who is the first Canadian to reach the quarters since Michael Belkin in 1968, after eliminating Feliciano Lopez in five sets.
The number one seed, who regularly trains with Raonic, has been impressed by the Canadian's recent commitment on and off the court telling the BBC, “He’s been playing some great tennis in the last 15 months. He deserves to be where he is now, top 10, coming closer to top five in the world.”
Wawrinka keeps title hopes alive
Stan Wawrinka remains in contention for a second Australian Open title winning 7-6 (7-2), 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 (10-8), against Spain’s Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, setting up a tantalising quarter final against Kei Nishikori.
Wawrinka saved four set points in the last tie breaker while losing 6-2, then saved a fifth set point to take the match to four sets.
Wawrinka had seemed to gain the upper hand in the first set, but the Spaniard was stubborn and found his rhythm winning the third set to take the contest to just over three hours.
Speaking to the Guardian about facing Nishikori in the quarters he said, “It’s always tough to play against him. He’s a great shot maker. He’s always taking the ball really early and doesn’t give you a lot of time. He’s a tough player.”
Nishikori Dispatches Ferrer
Kei Nishikori, who was cheered on by a raft of Japanese support at the Rod Laver Arena, earned himself an Australian Open quarterfinal by winning 6-3, 6-3, 6-3, against Spaniard David Ferrer. Only Rafa Nadal and Novak Dojokovic have beaten the Spaniard in straight sets on hard or clay-court since the beginning of 2011.
Kei Nishikori has not long been world No 5, and unsure of his latest ranking the Japanese player said: "I'm really new to being no 5. I feel more pressure than before. I think I need more time to get used to it."
Nishikori, who was the first Asian man to reach a Grand Slam Final at the US Open, utilised his superior speed and backhand to aggressively force David Ferrer into defending, hitting 43 winners to Ferrer’s 14. Both players had the same number of unforced errors, sitting at 44.
David Ferrer looked lethargic giving up on a number of winners in the last set as Nishikori stabilised his game to go through in straight sets. This marks Nishikori’s fifth straight victory over Ferrer, although this is the first time he has beaten him in straight sets. The previous six victories have all gone to five.
Nishikori's fourth round victory sets up a quarter final against fourth seed Stan Wawrinka.