Novak Djokovic is looking to win his sixth Italian Open title.© AFP
World number one Novak Djokovic swept into the Italian Open quarter-finals on Thursday with a straight sets wins over Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in front of spectators who were allowed to watch in the Foro Italico for the first time. The five-time Rome champion won through 6-2, 6-1 in 1hr 10min against the 48th-ranked Spaniard with the venue filled to 25 per cent of capacity. “It was not good, it was great. I missed the crowd,” said the 33-year-old Serb after the match.
“It was nice to see them back.”
After losing his opening service game, Djokovic powered back with five breaks of serve, outclassing his rival, despite a late fightback, to seal the win on his sixth match point.
“He started well, but I managed to break back straight away and establish the control and consistency.
“I thought I played at least 20-30 percent better than on Monday.”
The 18-time Grand Slam winner next plays either Greek fifth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas or ninth seed Matteo Berrettini for a place in the semi-final.
Earlier Rafael Nadal saved two match points to beat Denis Shapovalov 3-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7/3) to reach the Italian Open quarter-finals.
Nadal will next play either Germany’s Alexander Zverev, the sixth seed, or Japan’s Kei Nishikori for a place in the semi-finals.
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