Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic through to French Open fourth round

• No3 seed Agnieszka Radwanska knocked out
• Federer and Djokovic both win in four sets

Roger Federer French Open


Roger Federer in action during his four-set French Open third round win.

Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic ran into a spot of bother at the French Open, dropping a set each and each needing more than three hours to reach the fourth round on Friday. The No3 seed Agnieszka Radwanska was knocked out 6-4, 6-4 by Croatia’s Ajla Tomljanovic, becoming the latest victim of a new generation of talent sweeping through the women’s draw.

The seventeen-time major winner Federer saw off Russian Dmitry Tursunov 7-5, 6-7, 6-2, 6-4 and the Serbian No2 seed Djokovic, chasing the only major title to elude him, beat the Croatian Marin Cilic 6-3, 6-2, 6-7, 6-4. “I am relieved and happy to be through to the next round,” said the No4 seed Federer, who wasted 17 break points.

Tursunov, the 31st seed, played boldly but needed treatment on a leg in the third set and Federer set up a meeting with Latvia’s Ernests Gulbis, who is rediscovering his best form after a freefall down the rankings.

Djokovic, one of three men to have beaten the eight-time Roland Garros champion Rafael Nadal on clay this season, showed signs of frustration against Cilic. He seemed in complete control when his 25th-seeded opponent forced a tie-break, which the six-time major winner lost 7-2. Djokovic regained control, however, and sealed victory when Cilic double-faulted. His next opponent will be either Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, the 13th seed, or Poland’s Jerzy Janowicz.

In the women’s draw, Radwanska’s defeat means that the top three seeds have now been sent packing following the first-round exit of Chinese Li Na and the second-round elimination of the defending champion and world No1 Serena Williams. It is the first time since tennis turned professional in 1968 that the top three seeds in the women’s draw have failed to qualify for the fourth round of a grand slam event.

“After seeing the two first seeds go out you kind of feel you can do this too,” said the 21-year-old Tomljanovic. “I grew up with these girls who are beating them. I went into the stadium for the first time, and she kind of feels like home there, because she’s been there a lot more than I have. I went out there and inside I really thought I could win. I think that showed and it is why I won.”

Radwanska’s defeat was another boost for the 2012 champion and last year’s runner-up Maria Sharapova, who beat the unseeded Argentine Paula Ormaechea 6-0, 6-0 on court Philippe Chatrier, inflicting the first “double bagel” of the tournament on an opponent.

Poland’s Radwanska reached the Australian Open semi-finals in January but played poorly on Friday, causing the world No72 few problems. “This year I’ve been in a few situations when I did not execute and this time I wanted to make it right,” the Florida-based Tomljanovic said.

Tomljanovic, who had failed to qualify for Roland Garros every year since 2010, will next meet the Spanish No14 seed Carla Suárez Navarro after she ended the run of the American teenager Taylor Townsend with a 6-2, 6-2 win.

Tomljanovic was joined in the fourth round by the former finalist Sam Stosur of Australia, who beat the Slovakian No9 seed Dominika Cibulkova 6-4, 6-4. “I’m very happy with my tennis, today was definitely the toughest match. I am very happy to get through in straight sets,” said the 2011 US Open champion, who now has a 5-0 record against Cibulkova.

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