Djokovic, Murray advance to Madrid Open quarterfinals

May 5, 2016

MADRID (AP) Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray made their way into the Madrid Open quarterfinals on Thursday, each with straight-set wins.

The top-ranked Djokovic beat Roberto Bautista Agut 6-2, 6-1 for his 30th win of the season, the most on tour. Defending champion Murray defeated Gilles Simon 6-4, 6-2.

''I wanted to be aggressive and it's what I've done,'' said Djokovic, who had 25 winners and only 11 unforced errors. ''The conditions were quite different than yesterday, it was a bit slower but a bit more windier, so I had to be concentrated.''

Djokovic will next face either seventh-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga or 11th-seeded Milos Raonic.


Former Brazil soccer great Ronaldo was at the ''Magic Box'' to watch Djokovic play. A day earlier, Djokovic met Ronaldo at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium before Real Madrid's game against Manchester City in the Champions League. Rafael Nadal was also at the soccer match.

Murray, seeded second, broke Simon's serve in the final game of the first set and twice in the second to stay on track to defend his title.

''I didn't return that well at the beginning,'' Murray said. ''But when I got into a rhythm, I was able to dictate a lot of points. I used my variety well and served well. He wasn't able to put me under much pressure on my serve after the first couple of games.''

Murray's match against Simon was a rematch of the 2008 final in Madrid, when the British player won his first title at the tournament.

The match was interrupted for a few minutes late in the second set after a spectator fell ill and had to be attended to by paramedics. The match resumed while doctors stayed on in the stands.

Murray's win in Madrid last year was his first at a Masters tournament on clay. This year, he reached the semifinals of the Monte Carlo Masters, losing to eventual champion Nadal in three sets.

Also, sixth-seeded Kei Nishikori reached the quarterfinals by defeating 10th-seeded Richard Gasquet 6-4, 7-5, while eighth-seeded Tomas Berdych beat ninth-seeded David Ferrer 7-6 (8), 7-5.

In the women's tournament, 19-year-old qualifier Louisa Chirico defeated Daria Gavrilova of Australia 7-6 (1), 6-2 to reach the semifinals.

The 130th-ranked Chirico became the first American teenager to reach the semifinals of a top clay-court event since Ashley Harkleroad in Charleston, South Carolina, in 2003.

Chirico beat 14th-seeded Ana Ivanovic in the second round, and took advantage of the late withdrawal of Victoria Azarenka in the third round. She will next face either 38th-ranked Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia or wild-card entry Sorana Cirstea of Romania.

Also, sixth-seeded Simona Halep reached the semifinals by beating Irina-Camelia Begu 6-3, 0-6, 6-1.


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