• French Open, Day Seven

Ferrer flattens apologetic Youzhny

ESPN staff
June 2, 2012 « Majestic Murray back to his best in Paris | Chartbeat test »
David Ferrer, a clay-court specialist, has never been past the Roland Garros quarters © Getty Images
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Sixth seed David Ferrer kept plenty in reserve as he breezed past an out-of-sorts Mikhail Youzhny in the third round of the French Open.

Spain's Ferrer, a potential quarter-final opponent for Andy Murray, barely broke sweat on his way to a 6-0 6-2 6-2 triumph in one hour 41 minutes.

At 30 years of age, Ferrer is running out of opportunities to get his hands on the French Open trophy, and so will be grateful to have barely made a dent in his stamina tank.

Youzhny led Ferrer 4-2 in the head-to-head ahead of the contest, but looked to have no answer to his opponent's persistent, battling style. The Spaniard always looks most confident on clay, and this match was no exception - although it should be noted he has never been past the quarter-finals at Roland Garros.

When Youzhny finally got on the board during the second frame, he scrawled "sorry" on the court, before normal service was resumed, with Ferrer always in total control. He grabbed seven breaks of serve in all, while Youzhny did himself no favours by succumbing to 39 unforced errors - nearly four times as many as his opponent.

Ferrer will face Marcel Granollers in the fourth round, which will be the precursor to that prospective Murray meeting.

Granollers dealt with Paul-Henri Mathieu on Saturday, with the Frenchman perhaps drained after his epic five-setter against John Isner earlier in the week. Granollers, the 20th seed, looked like he was going to be on the wrong end of an epic comeback after Mathieu fought back from two sets down, but his opponent ran out of steam as Granollers was handed a 6-4 6-4 1-6 4-6 6-1 win.

Eighth seed Janko Tipsarevic recovered from a break down in the third set to stroll past home favourite Julien Benneteau 6-3 7-5 6-4. Tipsarevic moves into a clash with Nicolas Almagro, who took care of Leonardo Mayer.

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