It was smooth sailing for the Top 10 seeds on Saturday at Wimbledon as all five in action won in straight sets to advance to some mouth-watering match-ups in the round of 16 on Monday.
“Big 4” members Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer looked sharp as the No. 2-seeded Serb doused the flame of streaking Ernests Gulbis 6-4, 6-1, 7-6(2), and the No. 3-seeded Swiss held off the aggressive game of No. 27 Mischa Zverev 7-6(3), 6-4, 6-4.
The former No. 1 Djokovic was amped-up, yelling at the sky and the chair umpire during the contest, topping Gulbis who had previously shocked former US Open winner Juan Martin del Potro earlier in the week.
“Obviously when you’re playing well, then you’re feeling well, then you’re even more motivated — passionate to see how far it can take you,” the 30-year-old said. “The passion is back. I’ve been feeling better on the court.”
On Monday he will face Frenchman Adrian Mannarino, who upset French countryman and No. 15 seed Gael Monfils in five sets 7-6(3), 4-6, 5-7, 6-3, 6-2.
Federer said he is happy for the Sunday day of rest before facing No. 13-seeded former “Baby Fed” Grigor Dimitrov, who advanced when opponent Dudi Sela retired after losing the first two sets 6-1, 6-1.
“Every time I play against him he’s stronger than the time before,” the Swiss said of his almost mirror-image rival Dimitrov. “I’m ready for a tough one but sure again, another exciting match because he’s a great shotmaker.”
Other Top 10 winners were No. 6 Milos Raonic straight-setting No. 25 Albert Ramos 7-6(3), 6-4, 7-5; No. 8 Dominic Thiem beating American Jared Donaldson, who served for the first set, 7-5, 6-4, 6-2; and No. 10 Alexander Zverev who ended the run of Cinderella-story Austrian Sebastian Ofner 6-4, 6-4, 6-2.
Raonic will next meet the younger Zverev, and Thiem will face No. 11 Tomas Berdych, who overpowered David Ferrer 6-3, 6-4, 6-3.
In a match suspended from the previous day, No. 24 Sam Querrey needed just one game, a service break, to finish off No. 12 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-2, 3-6, 7-6(5), 1-6, 7-5.
“It’s really the most anti-climactic way to finish a match,” said Querrey, who will next battle serves with unseeded South African Kevin Anderson.
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