ATP Rome: Novak Djokovic sprints past Philipp Kohlschreiber to reach QF


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ATP Rome: Novak Djokovic sprints past Philipp Kohlschreiber to reach QF

The four-time Rome champion Novak Djokovic is through to the 13th straight quarter-final in the Italian capital, defeating Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-3 6-0 in 62 minutes to sail through a challenging day. Following a dominant triumph over Denis Shapovalov, Novak had the upper hand against Kohlschreiber all the time to oust the German for the tenth time in 12 matches and extend his winning streak that started in Madrid.

Djokovic saved all three break points and Philipp would never deliver the same numbers on clay against such a strong returner, beating Novak at Indian Wells before two losses in Monte Carlo and here in Rome. The Serb clinched more than half of the return points and converted all four break points to control the scoreboard and bring the match home in no time at all.

Hitting 22 winners and 16 unforced errors, Djokovic left Philipp on just five winners and almost 20 mistakes, powerless against deep and accurate strokes from world no. 1 who had the advantage in both the shortest and more extended rallies.

Rattling off one good hold after another in the opening set, Novak stayed on the positive side of the scoreboard and secured a break in game two with a deep return that gave him the momentum. Serving for the opener at 5-3, Djokovic fired three winners to secure the first part of the match after 37 minutes, hoping for more of the same in the rest of the encounter.

Playing the second match of the day, the German veteran had nothing left in the tank in the decider, winning only eight points and suffering breaks in games one, three and five to propel Novak into the last eight after a forehand winner from the Serb in game six.

Novak will now face Juan Martin del Potro on Friday and should be the favorite for advancing into another Rome semi-final.