Novak Djokovic delighted to see off ‘quality player’ Pablo Carreno Busta

A Novak Djokovic forehand

It looked like a walk in the park, but Novak Djokovic insists his win over Pablo Carreno Busta was a lot tougher than the scoreboard suggested.

World No 1 Djokovic reached the quarter-final of the Cincinnati Masters with a 6-3, 6-4 win over the Spaniard in a clash that lasted under 90 minutes.

The Serb broke once in both sets, but he also had to save a couple of break points on his own serve in the second set.

“I’m very pleased with the performance today because I played against a very great, quality player tonight,” Djokovic said.

“I don’t think the score indicates how tough it was on the court. We battled it out. I think I was serving really well. That was probably the best shot in the game tonight for me, over 70 per cent of first serves in. Got me out of trouble in the second set when I was facing break points,” Djokovic said.

“I thought he was very solid. Played against him a couple of times and have seen him play, and I knew what quality he possesses, but he did surprise me with his aggressiveness from the back of the court. As soon as he got a little bit of a softer ball from my side, he went for it from both forehand and backhand flat coming in.”

The 16-time Grand Slam champion will face Lucas Pouille in the quarters after the Frenchman beat eighth seed Karen Khachanov of Russia 6-7(3) 6-4 6-2.

Spain’s Roberto Bautista Agut beat Miomir Kecmanovic 6-1, 6-2 to set up a clash against Frenchman Richard Gasquet, who ousted Argentine Diego Schwartzman 7-6 (7-6), 6-3 while the other quarter-final will see Belgium’s David Goffin up against Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka.

Meanwhile, Roger Federer’s conqueror Andrey Rublev will face fellow Russian Daniil Medvedev, who beat German Jan-Lennard Struff 6-2, 6-1.

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