An aggressive Alexander Zverev punched his ticket into the French Open quarter-finals with a 6-1, 6-4, 6-3 win over Bulgarian 28th seed Grigor Dimitrov on Monday to raise hopes that his barren Grand Slam run could finally end.
Playing in the late session on Court Philippe Chatrier for the third match in a row, 22nd seed Zverev was at his dominant best again on a balmy evening as he returned to the quarter-finals for a fifth time in six years.
Up next for the towering twice Roland Garros semifinalist is Argentine Tomas Martin Etcheverry.
Zverev, whose only defeat by Dimitrov in four previous meetings was nearly a decade ago, wrapped up the first set in double quick time with stunning shot-making that helped him capitalise on all three of his breakpoints.
Having been on the ropes early in the match, the 32-year-old Dimitrov came out fighting in the second set and broke for a 3-2 lead before saving two breakpoints to hold in the next game.
But the wheels soon came off for former world number three Dimitrov, who miscued a volley and was flummoxed by a lob into the wind, as German Zverev hit back and increased his grip on the contest when his opponent crashed a shot into the net.
Zverev saved breakpoints to go up 3-0 in the third but a double fault handed Dimitrov a lifeline and he drew level.
Normal service soon resumed, however, and Zverev finished the match in fine style to send out a warning to his rivals.
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