(Reuters) – Highlights of the sixth day at the French Open, the second Grand Slam tournament of the year, on Friday (all times GMT):
1756 STEPHENSSETS UP MUGURUZACLASH
Sloane Stephens, last year’s runner-up, produced a gritty display to quell the challenge of Polona Hercog as the American sealed a 6-3 5-7 6-4 victory to book a fourth-round meeting with 2016 champion Garbine Muguruza.
Holder Rafa Nadal, chasing a record-extending 12th singles title at Roland Garros, dropped a set to Belgium’s David Goffin for the first time on clay before sealing a 6-1 6-3 4-6 6-3 victory on Court Philippe-Chatrier.
Japan’s Kei Nishikori, the seventh seed, ran into trouble in his clash with Serbia’s Laslo Djere before edging a five-setter 6-4 6-7(6) 6-3 4-6 8-6 in four hours and 26 minutes.
1503 FEDERERSHINES IN MILESTONEMATCH
Roger Federer became the first player to contest 400 Grand Slam matches and celebrated the feat by beating Norwegian 20-year-old Casper Ruud 6-3 6-1 7-6(8) in the third round.
Ruud’s father Christian had competed at Roland Garros in 1999 when Federer made his debut in the tournament.
Spain’s Garbine Muguruza blasted past ninth seed Elina Svitolina 6-3 6-3 to snap a run of three straight defeats by the big-hitting Ukrainian.
1347 TSURENKOBATTLESBIRTHDAYBLUES TO PROGRESS
Ukraine’s Lesia Tsurenko said fighting negative thoughts on her 30th birthday a day earlier was just as tough as her match with Aleksandra Krunic on Friday which she sealed with a 11-9 victory in the deciding third set.
“I think the main mental problem yesterday was that I had a birthday… I’m now 30, and I had so many things in my head that… it was one of the worst days of my life,” she said.
“I thought I’ll feel good, but I wasn’t feeling well since two days ago. I start to think that I’m 30 and I don’t have much time left to play on tour and all this bad things.
“And it was really tough mentally to play, and my body was not listening to me. And the only thing I wanted to do is to finish and quit that match. But… being a tennis player, at some point you think no, no, no. I’m going to fight.”
1309 PAIRETHROUGH AS CARRENOBUSTARETIRES
Frenchman Benoit Paire was leading 6-2 4-6 7-6(1) against Pablo Carreno Busta when his Spanish rival retired injured.
Anastasija Sevastova, seeded 12th, rallied past Belgium’s Elise Mertens 6-7(3) 6-4 11-9 in a clash that lasted three hours and 18 minutes on Court Suzanne-Lenglen.
Also advancing to the next round were Lesia Tsurenko, who overcame Aleksandra Krunic 5-7 7-5 11-9, and Madison Keys, who beat Priscilla Hon 7-5 5-7 6-3.
Unseeded Martin Klizan outlasted Frenchman Lucas Pouille 7-6(4) 2-6 6-3 3-6 9-7 in a contest that resumed on Friday after it was stopped due to fading light on Thursday. The Slovakian next faces 10th seed Karen Khachanov of Russia.
1034 MARTICSTUNSPLISKOVA IN STRAIGHTSETS
Croatia’s Petra Martic eased past second seed Karolina Pliskova 6-3 6-3 in the third round on Court Philippe-Chatrier to continue her fine form on clay this season with a 14th main-draw victory.
0910 PLAYBEGINS AT ROLANDGARROS
Play began under cloudy skies in Paris with the temperature hovering around 18 degrees Celsius. Showers are expected later in the evening.
(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar and Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by David Goodman, Pritha Sarkar and Tony Lawrence)