Rafael Nadal stormed into 16th round of Australian Open

Vastavam web: Rafael Nadal stormed into the round of 16 at the Australian Open today with a vintage performance as Grigor Dimitrov and Elina Svitolina kept their Grand Slam hopes alive on a hot draining day.The Spanish world number one showed no mercy to 28th seed Damir Dzumhur on Margaret Court Arena, as he rediscovers his best form after ankle trouble.”I was very, very focused,” Nadal said. “I’m very happy with everything and to have another chance on Sunday.”

That chance will be against 24th seeded Argentine Diego Schwartzman for a place in the quarter-finals.Third seed Dimitrov, who could meet Nadal in the semis, had plenty to prove after a huge second-round fright from a qualifier, who pushed him to five sets.”These are the most important matches for me, when things are not working for me and I find a way,” he said. “I’m feeling good physically, the heat didn’t scare me at all today, so that’s a good sign.” He will next face the winner of an intriguing night match which pits Australian Nick Kyrgios against French veteran Jo- Wilfried Tsonga.At just 15, Kostyuk was the youngest Melbourne Park third-round contestant since Martina Hingis in 1996, and was hailed after her previous win as “the future of tennis”.

But she still has a lot to learn with fellow Ukrainian Svitolina handing out a 6-2, 6-2 lesson.”She’s definitely got a bright future,” said Svitolina, adding: “It’s very special for me to get past the third round.” In a tournament shorn of seeds, 81st ranked Petra Martic also swept into the round of 16, celebrating her 27th birthday by holding off a gritty three-set challenge from Thai qualifier Luksika Kumkhum.Her reward is a match against Belgium’s Elise Mertens, who beat struggling Alize Cornet of France in two tough sets.