Roger Federer saved two match points against Borna Coric to advance to the quarter-finals of the Italian Open on Thursday as defending champion Rafael Nadal and top seed Novak Djokovic raced through in straight sets.
Howerever, world number one Naomi Osaka has pulled out of the Italian Open before Thursday’s quarter-finals with injury just a week before the start of the French Open. The 21-year-old withdrew because of a “pain in her right hand,” organisers announced.Federer came through 2-6, 6-4, 7-6 (9/7) against 13th seed Coric after earlier beating Portugal’s Joao Sousa 6-4, 6-3 in the second round as players doubled up after rain wiped out play on Wednesday.
Federer, a four-time finalist in Rome, trailed 0-4 before dropping the first set, coming back in the second and saving two match points in the third set tie-break.
“Things definitely went my way tonight,” said Federer.
Nadal dropped just two games throughout the day, dispatching Georgian Nikoloz Basilashvili 6-1, 6-0 in the third round after earlier also dropping just one game against France’s Jeremy Chardy.
Djokovic, a four-time Italian Open winner, next plays Argentine seventh seed Juan Martin Del Potro for a place in the semi-finals.
Djokovic beat German Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-3, 6-0 after earlier easing past Canadian Denis Shapovalov 6-1, 6-3.Meanwhile, before calling her exit, the Japanese star, Osaka was due to meet Madrid Open champion and sixth seed Kiki Bertens for a place in the final four in Rome. She eased into the last eight in Rome with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Mihaela Buzarnescu.