Nadal, Djokovic advance in French Open

24 May 2022, 12:38 pm
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World number one Novak Djokovic launched his French Open title defence in routine fashion with a straight-set win over Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka. Serbia’s Djokovic dropped just four games as he cruised to a 6-3 6-1 6-0 victory on Court Philippe Chatrier . Djokovic was making his return to Grand Slam action after his high-profile deportation from Australia before the Australian Open in January. Earlier, 13-time champion Rafael Nadal beat Jordan Thompson 6-2 6-2 6-2.

Djokovic was unable to defend his Australian Open title after being deported from the country over his Covid-19 vaccination status and risked being frozen out of Roland Garros until France lifted restrictions in almost all public spaces in March.

The 20-time Grand Slam champion has had mixed fortunes on the court this season with shock defeats in Monte Carlo and Belgrade before regrouping to capture his first title in six months without dropping a set at last week’s Italian Open.

Djokovic, who could face Nadal in the quarter-finals as he looks to equal the Spaniard’s record haul of 21 major titles, continued the form he showed in Rome, despatching Nishioka in just under two hours.