A relentless Novak Djokovic shrugged off Juan Martin Del Potro while Andy Murray overcame a nasty ankle injury as the second and fourth seeds joined champion Rafa Nadal in the French Open fourth round on Saturday.
An impromptu night's rest after Friday’s match was suspended because of bad light at the end of the second set allowed Djokovic to swing the momentum back his way and take his unbeaten run to 42 matches, including 40 in 2011, with 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, 6-2 triumph.
Murray thrashed Germany's Michael Berrer 6-2, 6-3, 6-2 despite turning his ankle when trying to slide on the clay to reach a ball early in the second set.
The Briton, yet to win a grand slam title having lost to Djokovic in the Australian Open final in January, had extensive strapping and was able to carry on despite continued winces and an immediate loss of serve.
The lasting effects of the injury were not clear as the German underdog was so weak that Murray did not have to test the ankle hugely having started the match in much better form. He will have a scan on Sunday. If fit, Murray next meets Serbia’s 15th seed Viktor Troicki, a 6-4 3-6 6-3 6-4 winner over Ukrainian Alexandr Dolgopolov.
Champion Nadal stuttered through his first two matches but was all smiles in a 6-1, 6-3, 6-0 win over Croat qualifier Antonio Veic with his recent vulnerability only in evidence on first serve in the first set and when broken twice in the second.
Bidding for a sixth title here in seven years, the Spaniard enters round four with much more confidence but with much more dangerous opponents to come who could exploit a nervousness caused by recent Madrid and Rome losses to Djokovic.
The Serb faced his toughest test since those finals when coming back out onto a packed and sunbaked court with 2009 US Open champion and 25th seed Del Potro threatening to upset all the pre-tournament predictions of more Djokovic success.
But any belief the Argentine has picked up by levelling late in Friday’s gloom evaporated when Djokovic broke for 4-2 in the third set having earlier fought off two break points including with one tremendous slugging rally of 23 shots.
Djokovic now locks horns with home favourite Richard Gasquet, who won through on Friday along with Roger Federer.