Fognini fires up Italian Open crowd with win over Thiem

Italy's Fabio Fognini falls as he returns the ball to Austria's Dominic Thiem during their Italian Open tennis tournament match in Rome Wednesday May 16

Nadal will retake the World No 1 spot he lost to Roger Federer last week if he clinches the trophy. Osaka, 20, failed to convert any of her six break point opportunities, hitting 29 unforced errors to Halep's 14.

The 21-year-old from Hamburg next meets Britain's Kyle Edmund, who beat Djokovic in the Madrid second round, and got past Lucas Pouille 6-2, 7-6 (7/3) in Rome on Wednesday.

Former winners Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic powered into the third round of the Italian Open in Rome on Wednesday but Austrian Dominic Thiem fell at the first hurdle. "It was important, after a loss in Madrid, to come back strong. I don't know how many mistakes I did, but not much", said Nadal.Djokovic, a four-time victor, is on the comeback trail three months after elbow surgery and eased past Georgia's Nikoloz Basilashvili 6-4, 6-2.

The 16-time Grand Slam victor next takes on either Canadian teenager Denis Shapovalov or Robin Haase.

The 31-year-old, who recently claimed the 11th titles of his career at both Monte Carlo and Barcelona, took the first set in 34 minutes, coasting to victory in just an hour.

The biggest upset of the day belonged to Japan's Kei Nishikori, who came from behind to upend third-seeded Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov 6-7 (4), 7-5, 6-4.

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Albert Ramos-Vinolas rallied to beat eighth-seeded John Isner in three tie-breaks 6-7 (5-7) 7-6 (7-2) 7-6 (7-5).

World number one Rafael Nadal will continue his quest for sixth Madrid Open title when he squares off with Argentinean tennis star Diego Schwartzman in the last-16 clash of the men's singles event here on Thursday. The Romanian will next play 13th-seeded American Madison Keys, who battled past Croatian Donna Vekic 7-6 (7/2), 7-6 (7/0) for a place in the quarter-finals.

"For some reason, I couldn't get a ball in the court after that, on my backhand side", Osaka said. After two victories in two weeks, Zverev became the youngest victor of the tournament since Rafael Nadal who won it at the age of 19.

Nishikori dropped the first set but mounted an impressive comeback to secure a hard-fought 6-7, (4-7), 7-5, 6-4 victory. Garcia, the seventh seed, went through with a break in both sets in 1hr 30min and she will next play either American Sloane Stephens or Kaia Kanepi of Estonia.

World No 5 Karolina Pliskova was eliminated by Maria Sakkari in controversial circumstances, prompting the Czech to react by smashing her racket against the umpire's chair at the end of the match.

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