Dominic Thiem sets up Monte-Carlo quarter-final with Rafael Nadal after battling back to beat Novak Djokovic


World number one Rafael Nadal maintained his bid for an 11th Monte-Carlo Masters title with a 6-3, 6-2 third-round victory over Karen Khachanov. The Spanish top seed took just 80 minutes to see off the 21-year-old Russian and reach his 14th consecutive quarter-final at the event.

Nadal will face now Dominic Thiem after the Austrian fought back to dump out Novak Djokovic, playing just his ninth tour match in as many months, 6-7 (2), 6-2, 6-3. Fifth seed Thiem needed two hours and 29 minutes to finally account for the 2013 and 2015 champion after letting slip three set points in the first.

Marin Cilic received a walkover after third-round opponent Milos Raonic was forced to withdraw with a knee injury, and the second seed will face Japan’s Kei Nishikori in last eight after his 6-0, 2-6, 6-3 victory over Andreas Seppi.

Grigor Dimitrov, seeded fourth, set up a quarter-final meeting with sixth seed David Goffin by beating Philipp Kohlschreiber 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 as the Belgian edged past Roberto Bautista Agut 6-4, 7-5.

Richard Gasquet reached a significant landmark when he defeated Mischa Zverev 6-2, 7-5 to record the 500th win of his career, the first Frenchman to do so. Gasquet will now face Zverev’s younger brother Alexander on his 21st birthday after the German defeated compatriot Jan-Lennard Struff 6-4, 4-6, 6-4.


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