Holder Wawrinka, Murray in last 16; Kvitova crashes out

Stan Wawrinka scored a 6-4, 6-3, 7-5 win over France's Jeremy Chardy to enter the pre-quarters at the French Open on Friday. Andy Murray needed just a shade under two hours to beat 6ft 11in Ivo Karlovic 6-1, 6-4, 7-6 (7/3).

Andy Murray returns to Ivo Karlovic at the French Open on Friday.   -  Reuters

Defending champion Stan Wawrinka reached the last 16 at the French Open on Friday with a 6-4, 6-3, 7-5 win over France's Jeremy Chardy. The third seed from Switzerland next goes up against the winner of the tie between Gilles Simon of France and Victor Troicki of Serbia for a place in the quarterfinals.

It was Wawrinka's 10th straight win at Roland Garros following his run to a second Grand Slam title last year. He is seeking to become the eighth man in the Open era, since 1968, to successfully defend the title in Paris.

Andy Murray cut down Croatian giant Ivo Karlovic to reach the French Open last 16 on Friday as two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova became the fourth top 10 women's seed to be knocked out. Murray, a three-time semifinalist, had needed two five-set matches and three days of play to get to the last 32. But on Friday the 29-year-old needed just a shade under two hours to beat 6ft 11in (2.11m) Karlovic 6-1, 6-4, 7-6 (7/3).

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It was his seventh win in seven matches against the 37-year-old as Murray goes on to face either John Isner of the United States or Teymuraz Gabashvili of Russia.

"Especially at the end it was very close. I got off to a quick start and against someone like Ivo that's very important," said Murray.

"I was glad to win that tiebreak at the end."

Kei Nishikori of Japan reached the last 16 with a 6-3, 6-4, 3-6, 2-6, 6-4 win over Spain's Fernando Verdasco. The fifth seed will play Richard Gasquet for a place in the quarterfinals after the Frenchman defeated Australian Nick Kyrgios 6-2, 7-6 (9/7), 6-2.

Nishikori is playing for the sixth time at Roland Garros, his best performance being a run into the quarterfinals finals as fifth seed last year. He also reached the final of the 2014 US Open becoming the first Asian male to contest a Grand Slam final, but lost to Marin Cilic.

Canada's eighth seed Milos Raonic overcame a left hip injury to defeat Slovakian lucky loser Andrej Martin, the world number 133, and reach the last 16 for a second time. Raonic won 7-6 (7/4), 6-2, 6-3 but only after requiring a medical timeout at the start of the third set to treat a hip injury.

The Canadian, plagued by a similar injury after reaching the Australian Open semi-finals in January, then needed to take a pain-killer before racing away to victory. "At one point it felt like I had trouble bringing my hip back around when I would sprint forward when my left leg was behind me. And then it sort of went the other way," said Raonic.

"The trainer was able to assure me that from what he could tell there was nothing serious."

Raonic, a quarterfinalist in 2014, next faces 55th-ranked Albert Ramos-Vinolas after the Spaniard stunned American 23rd seed Jack Sock 6-7 (2/7), 6-4, 6-4, 4-6, 6-4.

Romanians shine

Ramos-Vinolas, 28, had not won a match at Roland Garros since 2011 before this year.

Spanish fourth seed and last year's Wimbledon runner-up Garbine Muguruza won the last nine games to knock out Belgium's Yanina Wickmayer 6-3, 6-0.

Muguruza, a quarter-finalist in the last two years, faces a Russian challenge in the last-16 where either dangerous 2009 champion Svetlana Kuznetsova or Anastasia Pavlychenkova will be her opponent.

Romanian sixth seed Simona Halep, the runner-up to Maria Sharapova in 2014, needed three sets to see off 18-year-old Japanese player Naomi Osaka 4-6, 6-2, 6-3. Halep, 24, next faces 2010 finalist Sam Stosur who defeated 2015 runner-up Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic 6-3, 6-7 (0/7), 7-5.

It was only Stosur's fourth win 15 meetings with Safarova who has been troubled for most of this season with a debilitating bacterial infection. "Lucie and I always seem to play matches like this," said Stosur who fired 14 aces in her two-hour 22-minute win.

"Today I served well, went after it on first serve so I didn't give her too much chance to get a look in."

Czech 10th seed Kvitova became the fourth top 10 seed to exit by the third round after she lost 6-0, 6-7 (3/7), 6-0 to American world number 108 Shelby Rogers.

Kvitova, a semifinalist in 2012, committed 36 unforced errors as 23-year-old Rogers reached the last 16 of a Grand Slam for the first time. Rogers next plays Romanian 25th seed Irina-Camelia Begu.

With Halep also through, it's the first time since 1997 that two Romanian women have made the last-16.

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