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Djokovic, Alcaraz among players having reached QFs

Cincinnati [US], August 18 (ANI): Serbian tennis star Novak Djokovic extended his winning streak against Gael Monfils in his Cincinnati Masters round of 16 matches, reaching the tournament quarterfinals on Thursday.

With this win, he has the most wins without a defeat against a player in any ATP head-to-head match-up, breaking the tie with Rafael Nadal, who is 18-0 against Richard Gasquet.

Djokovic went 19-0 against Monfils by a margin of 6-3, 6-2, as per ATP.

“It was kind of an evolution of both players over the past 15-plus years that we have been playing each other in different parts of the world, also in juniors. I think early on I struggled a lot with him, I think physically as well. When you play one of the most athletic guys on the Tour, you have to be ready, every ball comes back. A couple of points today, especially in the first set he showed his athleticism,” said Djokovic as quoted by ATP.

After Alejandro Davidovich Fokina retired in the second set against Djokovic, The Serbian dominated Monfils for two sets in a one-hour, eight-minute win. This is his first win since his loss to Carlos Alcaraz in Wimbledon final and he looks on course for a rematch with the world number one position and title on the line.

Djokovic is 17-1 on hard courts this season and chasing his third title in Cincinnati, which he first won in 2018. Monfils was aiming to make back-to-back ATP Masters 1000 QFs runs after reaching the final eight in Toronto last week. But he failed,Djokovic’s next challenge will be American and home favourite Taylor Fritz, who reached quarters after Laslo Djere retired while trailing 0-5 in their Thursday meeting. This is Fritz’s second successive Cincinnati QF and 12th overall this season, including eight on hard surfaces. Djokovic has an edge over Fritz, with wins in their previous six matches. But Fritz has a 31-8 record in hard courts this season as well.

On the other hand, Carlos Alcaraz and Tommy Paul also battled it out for a QF spot, with Alcaraz prevailing by 7-6(6), 6-7(0), 6-3 in a third-round thriller.

Alcaraz avenged his loss to Paul a week back in Toronto and the American was once again a tough opponent for Wimbledon champion Alcaraz during this three-hour, 10-minute match-up.

“It was a really tough match. We were playing a really close match before the rain came. But I think I did pretty well [dealing with] the wait in the gym, warming up,” said Alcaraz.

“I told everyone that I really wanted [to win], since I lost in Toronto. I came here in Cincinnati and I am really happy with the level. I think I am getting better and better. I am really happy to be in the quarter-finals here,” he added.

Alcaraz’s QF opponent will be Max Purcell, who made it to the final eight with a win over Swiss star Stan Wawrinka 6-4, 6-2. Alcaraz is playing for more than just his fifth ATP Masters 1000 title, he is also aiming to keep his number one spot in ATP Rankings intact.

Earlier, Alexei Popyrin scored a 6-2, 1-6, 6-3 win over Emil Ruusuvuori to reach the QFs of the tournament, becoming the first lucky loser to reach Cincinnati’s final eight since Jeremy Chardy in 2012.

Poyrin will face Hubery Hurkacz, who beat fourth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-3, 6-4.

Also, another chapter to the rivalry was added when Alexander Zverev earned his first top-10 win of the season against Daniil Medvedev on Thursday by 6-4, 5-7, 6-4 in two hours and 34 minutes. (ANI)

https://www.bignewsnetwork.com/news/273935647/cincinnati-masters-djokovic-alcaraz-among-players-having-reached-qfs?utm_source=feeds.bignewsnetwork.com&utm_medium=referral Djokovic, Alcaraz among players having reached QFs

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