Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray remain on a quarter-final collision course at the Rogers Open in Toronto after both men came through their second round matches yesterday.
Djokovic was pushed all the way by talented Frenchman Gael Monfils 6-2 6-7 (4/7) 7-6 (7/2), while British number one Murray cruised to 6-2 6-2 triumph over Australian Nick Kyrgios.
Top seed Djokovic looked to be on the cusp of an easy win himself after a dominant opening set, but Monfils steadied the ship and then turned the tide with an audacious half-volley drop shot late in the second set.
The delightful winner, hit while the Frenchman looked the other way, had everyone in the stadium fooled and created momentum that saw him home in the second-set tie-break.
Monfils then looked to have cherry-picked the perfect moment to break Djokovic for the first time to go 3-1 up in the decider, but the world number one dug in to maintain his 100 per cent record against the Frenchman.
By contrast, Murray’s serve was too much for Kyrgios, producing seven aces, as he returned to action for the first time since failing to defend his Wimbledon title last month.
The 27-year-old now faces Richard Gasquet, who beat Ivo Karlovic 5-7 7-6 (7/5) 6-3, while Djokovic will meet Jo-Wilfried Tsonga after he triumphed over his countryman Jeremy Chardy 7-6 (8/6) 6-4 earlier on Wednesday.
If they both manage to come through those tests then they will meet in a repeat of the 2012 US Open final ahead of this year’s tournament in New York later this month.
Fifth seed David Ferrer made hard work of American qualifier Michael Russell, but he eventually came through 6-4 2-6 6-1 to book a third round match-up with Croatian Ivan Dodig, who beat Andreas Seppi 6-4 3-6 7-6 (7/5).
The winner of that clash will face either Marin Cilic or Roger Federer after Cilic beat Malek Jaziri to meet the world number three.
There were also wins for Julien Benneteau over Ernests Gulbis 7-6 (7/4) 6-3, Kevin Anderson over Fabio Fognini 7-5 6-2, Grigor Dimitrov over Donald Young 4-6 6-2 6-3 and Tommy Robredo over Gilles Simon 7-5 6-4.
Tomas Berdych, the Czech fourth seed, had to battle back from a set down to defeat Lu Yen-hsun 6-7 (4/7) 6-4 6-4, as did Milos Raonic, the sixth seed from Canada, who saw off Jack Sock 4-6 7-6 (7/2) 7-6 (7/4)
Elsewhere, Feliciano Lopez beat Tim Smyczek 7-5 6-4.