French trio march on
Originally published on: 26/02/10 12:15
Tsonga’s 6-4 6-2 1-6 6-1 win against Dudi Sela set up a date with James Blake, who dropped his first set of the tournament against Igor Andreev in a 6-3 6-2 3-6 6-1 win.
Monfils and Simon, who have both reached the last 16 in Melbourne for the first time, will face each other in the next round.
Monfils progressed courtesy of a 6-4 6-3 7-5 victory against Nicolas Almagro while Simon moved on thanks to a 7-6 (7/2) 6-4 6-2 triumph over Mario Ancic.
Tsonga, last year’s runner-up, was on good form out on Rod Laver Arena, interspersing the baseline battle with trips to the net and some well-executed lobs.
Fernando Verdasco’s red-hot form has earned him a tie against either Andy Murray or Jurgen Melzer, who meet in the night session.
Verdasco took one hour 50 minutes to thrash 22nd seed Radek Stepanek 6-4 6-0 6-0.
Verdasco, who has dropped just 12 games in his three matches to date, fired 34 winners past the Czech who also contributed to his downfall with 39 unforced errors.