Nadal beat Auger-Aliassime in five sets and will play Djokovic in the quarterfinals at Roland Garros: the great gesture with the rival that made him suffer

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* The main actions of Nadal’s victory for the round of 16 at Roland Garros

The Spanish Rafael Nadal (No. 5 in the ranking) survived this Sunday a battle of five sets and almost 4 hours and 30 minutes on the center court Philippe Chattier to beat the canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime (N° 9) by 3-6, 6-3, 6-2, 3-6 and 6-3 and meet in the quarterfinals of Roland Garros with the Serbian Novak Djokovic.

It is the 109th win in 112 matches played in Paris for Nadal, who is seeking to increase his record for Roland Garros titles to 14 and his Grand Slam titles to 22. But the Spaniard had to battle hard to claim victory, with Auger-Aliassime leading him to the fifth set, something that until now only two other players had achieved since 2006. Such was the effort that the match demanded of him that, once it was over, when the Canadian left the court under an immense ovation, the Spaniard turned around (he was changing his shirt) to join in the applause, which only stopped when his opponent got lost in the tunnel that took him to the locker room. An attitude of sporting chivalry much celebrated on social networks.

Nadal and Djokovic will meet on Tuesday for the 10th time at Roland Garros and the 59th in their careers, with a favorable balance for the Spaniard 30-28 and 7-2 in Paris, although the Serbian already defeated him in the quarterfinals of 2015 and in the last year’s semifinals, an edition that he would later win against Stefanos Tsitsipas. In fact, Djokovic is the only player capable of beating Nadal twice at Roland Garros.

Djokovic appears in this match without giving up a single set and after having clearly beaten the Argentine this Sunday Diego Schwartzmann (N° 16 16) by 6-1, 6-3 and 6-3 in just two hours and 15 minutes.

Once again, the Balkan surpassed the Argentine as he had done the previous six times they were face to face: US Open 2014, Roland Garros 2017, Rome 2019 and 2020 in the final, Australia 2020 and the same year in the group stage of the Masters played in London.

Previously, he had defeated the Japanese Yoshihito Nishioka (99), the Slovak alex molcan (38), Slovenian Aljaz Bedene (195).


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