Rafael Nadal advanced to the last 16 of the Italian Open with a 6-3, 6-1 victory over John Isner on Wednesday, while Alexander Zverev defeated Sebastian Baez.
Third seed Nadal, who is aiming for his 11th title in Rome, dispatched Isner in one hour and 17 minutes at the Foro Italico.
Nadal, who lost in the quarterfinals of the Madrid Open to countryman Carlos Alcaraz, can take advantage of the electrifying teenager’s absence in the Italian city to win the penultimate big clay tournament before the French Open later this month.
Isner held his own against the 21-time Grand Slam winner until game eight, when Nadal broke the veteran world number 27 and served for the first set.
From there, Nadal cruised to victory, dropping only 14 points en route to a third-round match against Denis Shapovalov.
Earlier, Zverev defeated Baez in straight sets, 7-6 (8/6), 6-3, in just over an hour and a half.
Tommy Paul or Alex de Minaur will meet second seed Zverev, who was soundly defeated by Alcaraz in the Madrid final over the weekend.
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