Showman Monfils sets up Nadal showdown

Gael Monfils (AFP)
Gael Monfils (AFP)

Melbourne - French showman Gael Monfils set up a clash with Rafael Nadal in the Australian Open fourth round with a straight-sets win over Philipp Kohlschreiber on Saturday.

Monfils reached the Melbourne round of 16 for the third time following a 6-3, 7-6 (7/1), 6-4 victory over the 32nd-seeded German in just under two hours on Margaret Court Arena.

It was the sixth seed's 13th win in 15 meetings with Kohlschreiber and clinched an anticipated crowd-pleasing encounter with Nadal, who fought back to beat rising young German Alexander Zverev in five sets.

Monfils trails the 14-time Grand Slam champion 12-2 in their meetings going back to 2005.

Monfils won his 24th match at the Australian Open following his earlier wins over Jiri Vesely and Alexandr Dolgopolov.

The Frenchman broke Kohlschreiber's serve five times and gave up his own serve three times while hitting 32 winners, 11 of them with his trademark forehand.

Saturday's results:

Men's singles

3rd rd

Dominic Thiem (AUT x8) bt Benoit Paire (FRA) 6-1, 4-6, 6-4, 6-4

David Goffin (BEL x11) bt Ivo Karlovic (CRO x20) 6-3, 6-2, 6-4

Roberto Bautista (ESP x13) bt David Ferrer (ESP x21) 7-5, 6-7 (6/8), 7-6 (7/3), 6-4

Denis Istomin (UZB) bt Pablo Carreno-Busta (ESP x30) 6-4, 4-6, 6-4, 4-6, 6-2

Rafael Nadal (ESP x9) bt Alexander Zverev (GER x24) 4-6, 6-3, 6-7 (5/7), 6-3, 6-2

Gael Monfils (FRA x6) bt Philipp Kohlschreiber (GER x32) 6-3, 7-6 (7/1), 6-4

Milos Raonic (CAN) bt Gilles Simon (FRA) 6-2, 7-6 (7/5), 3-6, 6-3

Women's singles

3rd rd

Jennifer Brady (USA) bt Elena Vesnina (RUS x14) 7-6 (7/4), 6-2

Mirjana Lucic-Baroni (CRO) bt Maria Sakkari (GRE) 3-6, 6-2, 6-3

Ekaterina Makarova (RUS x30) bt Dominika Cibulkova (SVK x6) 6-2, 6-7 (3/7), 6-3

Barbora Strycova (CZE x16) bt Caroline Garcia (FRA x21) 6-2, 7-5

Serena Williams (USA x2) bt Nicole Gibbs (USA) 6-1, 6-3

Johanna Konta (GBR x9) bt Caroline Wozniacki (DEN x17) 6-3, 6-1

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