PARIS (AFP) – Roger Federer became the oldest man to reach the French Open fourth round in 47 years on Friday by winning his record 400th Grand Slam match, while Rafael Nadal won in four sets as women’s second seed Karolina Pliskova was dumped out.
The 37-year-old Federer, playing at Roland Garros for the first time since 2015, saw off the 63rd-ranked Norwegian Casper Ruud 6-3, 6-1, 7-6 (10/8) on Court Suzanne Lenglen.
It is the 14th time the 20-time Grand Slam champion has reached the second week in Paris, and he will face Argentina’s world number 68 Leonardo Mayer for a quarter-final spot.
Federer is the oldest man to book a last-16 place since Nicola Pietrangeli, a two-time champion, at the age of 38 in 1972.
Reigning champion Nadal survived a blip to continue his bid for a record-extending 12th French Open title with a four-set win over David Goffin, ten years to the day since his shock 2009 exit to Robin Soderling.
The 17-time Grand Slam winner bounced back after an excellent third set from Belgian 27th seed Goffin to win 6-1, 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 and take his incredible Roland Garros win-loss record to 89-2 – those two defeats coming against Soderling in the last 16 a decade ago and against Novak Djokovic in 2015.
Nadal maintained his record of never having lost in the first week in Paris, although he withdrew injured before the third round in 2016.
He powered 38 winners past Goffin on Court Philippe Chatrier to set up a fourth-round clash with Argentinian Juan Ignacio Londero.
Later on Friday, play was stopped due to darkness with former champion Stan Wawrinka leading Grigor Dimitrov 7-6, (7/5), 7-6 (7/4), while Stefanos Tsitsipas and Filip Krajinovic played until 9:42 p.m. local time until the match was halted with the Greek star 7-5, 6-3, 5-5 ahead.