World No. 1 Novak Djokovic has nothing but good to say of Lorenzo Musetti as he underlined that he won’t be taking the rising Italian star for granted when they meet at the French Open.
Djokovic, who captured his lone French Open title in 2016, saw off Ricardas Berankis in straight sets 6-1 6-4 6-1 to reach the round-of-16 at Roland Garros.
Musetti, who is enjoying a career-high ranking of No. 76 in the world, beat fellow compatriot Marco Cecchinato in five sets to set up a Djokovic clash.
“We [have] never faced each other, but we did practise this season on this surface, a couple of times in Monte-Carlo, and other tournaments,” said Djokovic of his upcoming clash versus Musetti, as revealed on the ATP website. “I really like how he plays.
“He’s got a lot of firepower from both [his] forehand and backhand. He can play with a lot of spin. He’s got great feel [and] comes to the net. He can play short balls, drop shots. He can flatten out his serve. He can open up with a good kick and slice. He’s really got [an] all-around game.
“He is a big challenge to me. So there is no question I have to go out playing [at] a high level, because he will not have much to lose. I’m sure he’s going to come out and really try to play [the] tennis of his life one of the two big courts.”
Djokovic routinely handled Berankis
Djokovic got off to a fast start to the match, having won the opening five games.
Berankis served out the sixth game to get on the board but Djokovic then served out for the set in the following game.
Berankis performed much better in the second set but it wasn’t enough to win a set against Djokovic as the Serb claimed the lone break of the set in the fifth game.
In the third set, Djokovic claimed three breaks and lost no service games to book a straight-set wiin.