Top seed Roger Federer was in irresistible mood as he sailed effortlessly into the fourth round of the French Open at Roland Garros today with a 6-3 6-4 6-2 win over Mario Ancic.
The 95-minute masterclass on Philippe Chatrier court was a step up from his displays against Sam Querrey and Albert Montanes in the opening two rounds, and proved he was in perfect shape to end great rival Rafael Nadal’s monopoly on the title in Paris.
Ivan Ljubicic claimed a come-from-behind win against Nikolay Davydenko.
The giant Croat emerged from the shadows of a lean last couple of years to recover from being two sets down to the fourth seed and claim a superb 4-6 2-6 6-3 6-2 6-4 triumph in the third round.
The former world number three, who is seeded 28 here, clinched his passage to the last 16 with a slam dunk-style smash and fell to the floor with his head in his hands.
Ljubicic will play unseeded Frenchman Gael Monfils next, with Davydenko becoming the highest-seeded casualty of this year’s tournament.
Monfils, 59th in the world, defeated Jurgen Melzer 4-6 7-5 4-6 6-0 6-2 on Philippe Chatrier court to join compatriots Michael Llodra, Paul-Henri Mathieu, Jeremy Chardy and Julien Benneteau in the last 16 of their home grand slam.
Earlier, fifth seed David Ferrer emerged victorious from a five-set epic against Australia’s Lleyton Hewitt.
The Spaniard came through a topsy-turvy tussle 6-2 3-6 6-3 3-6 6-4 in more than three and a half hours to set up a clash with in-form Radek Stepanek.
The match could have gone either way but in the deciding set, Ferrer picked up the key break in the ninth game and held his nerve to serve out for the victory.
Stepanek, the 21st seed, wasted little time in seeing off Spain’s Tommy Robredo in straight sets.
The gritty Czech, who proved he is a threat on clay by beating Federer in Rome recently, demolished the 12th seed 6-3 6-2 6-1.
Big-serving Chilean Fernando Gonzalez came from two sets down to oust ninth seed Stanislas Wawrinka in another thriller.
Wawrinka, who has enjoyed a superb 2008, made a great start on Court Two and looked in cruise control as he went 3-0 up in the third set.
But 24th seed Gonzalez dug deep and fought back to clinch a 5-7 2-6 6-4 6-4 6-4 victory and a last-16 match with Robby Ginepri.
The unseeded Ginepri kept the American flag flying at Roland Garros with a 6-4 6-4 6-4 win over France’s Florent Serra.