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Tennis news - Men's round-up: Tomas Berdych continues comeback as Grigor Dimitrov eases through

Men's round-up: Berdych continues comeback as Dimitrov eases through to last 16

18/01/2019 at 17:56Updated 19/01/2019 at 00:11

Tomas Berdych roared back from losing the opening set against the 18th seed Diego Schwartzman to book his place in the last 16 of the Australian Open with a 5-7 6-3 7-5 6-4 victory at the Melbourne Arena.

It is the 11th time that Berdych has reached the round of 16 at the first Grand Slam of the year, and the two-time Australian Open finalist will face the winner of Alex De Minaur's clash with Rafael Nadal in the first match of the night session at the Rod Laver Arena.

Berdych, who is not seeded at a Grand Slam for the first time since Wimbledon 2005, reeled off some booming aces in a love service game to begin proceedings.

The Czech entered the encounter having not dropped a set this week, but he was broken in the 11th game in his first ever match with Schwartzman. Last year's French Open quarter-finalist stung his opponent with a round-the-net winner and a thumping forehand earned him the right to serve out the first set in 51 minutes.

But Berdych - who missed much of last season through back trouble - recovered, improving his forehand returns with 20 winners and only seven unforced errors, snaring the break before holding to win the second set and level the match.

In a tight third set, Schwartzman was the first to pass up the chance of a break in the eighth game, and the Argentine was made to pay as Berdych took the second of three break points to take the crucial break before serving out the set.

Schwartzman's first serve continued to tire with Berdych punishing on the second, and he had no response as the Czech struck early in the fourth set with a forehand winner.

The man from Buenos Aires played nine sets in the opening two rounds, and fatigue appeared to play its toll as Berdych showed his rich array of skills to serve out the win on the cusp of three hours of play.

Meanwhile, Grigor Dimitrov came through in straight sets 7-6(5), 6-4, 6-4 against the Italian Thomas Fabbiano as he seeks to better his quarter-final exit from last year.

Roger Federer took a straight set victory over American Taylor Fritz, after the second set went to a tie-break, beating him 6-2, 7-6, 6-4.

14th seed, Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas dropped a set in his match against 19th seed Nikoloz Basilashvili, but went on to win 6-3, 3-6, 7-6, 6-4.

Roberto Bautista Agut upset 10th seed Karen Khachanov with a straight set 6-4, 7-5, 6-4 victory.

Second seed Rafa Nadal looked far from injured as he made light work of Australian Alex De Minaur in his own back-garden, winning 6-1, 6-2, 6-4.

Sixth seed Marin Cilic hung on to come back from two sets down against Fernado Verdasco on Friday and win 4-6, 3-6, 6-1, 7-6, 6-3 in a five-set thriller.

Men's Singles Third Round Results

3-Roger Federer (SUI) bt Taylor Fritz (USA) 6-2 7-6 6-2

14-Stefanos Tsitsipas (GRE) bt 19-Nikoloz Basilashvili (GEO) 6-3 3-6 7-6 6-4

Tomas Berdych (CZE) bt 18-Diego Schwartzman (ARG) 5-7 6-3 7-5 6-4

20-Grigor Dimitrov (BGR) bt Thomas Fabbiano (ITA) 7-6 6-4 6-4

22-Roberto Bautista-Agut (ESP) bt 10-Karen Khachanov (RUS) 6-4 7-5 6-4

2-Rafael Nadal (ESP) bt 27-Alex De Minaur (AUS) 6-1 6-2 6-4

6-Marin CIlic (SER) bt 26-Fernando Verdasco (ESP) 4-6 3-6 6-1 7-6 6-3

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