'Ridiculous': Stunning detail in 'brutal' Novak Djokovic act

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Pictured here, Novak Djokovic seals his spot in a 16th Italian Open quarter-final.
Novak Djokovic has never failed to reach the Italian Open quarter-finals in 16 appearances in Rome. Pic: Tennis TV/Getty

Novak Djokovic has ruthlessly ended Stan Wawrinka's comeback run at the Italian Open, with a straight-sets demolition of his Swiss rival.

The World No.1 brutally dispatched Wawrinka 6-2, 6-2 to book a place in the quarter-finals and keep alive his hopes of retaining the top status in men's tennis.

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The 20-time grand slam champion needs to reach the last four in Rome to stop Russia's Daniil Medvedev from once again leapfrogging him into top spot.

Wawrinka has famously beaten Djokovic six times throughout their careers, with his most famous win coming against the Serb in the 2015 French Open final.

However, the injury-ravaged Swiss star - who won his first match in 15 months earlier this week - was no match for Djokovic in Rome.

“It is great to see Stan back and winning. He won two tough matches," Djokovic said after his impressive victory.

"You can see he is still not physically where he wants to be. But nevertheless he is Stan Wawrinka and he can hurt you if you give him time.

“I managed to do well from the beginning. I really moved him around the court and held my serve comfortably except for that loss of my serve in the second set.”

Djokovic is chasing a record-extending 38th Masters 1000 crown at the Italian Open, where he is a five-time champion.

Remarkably, the 34-year-old has now qualified for 16 out of 16 quarter-finals in Rome, with his display against Wawrinka leaving the tennis world in awe.

Novak Djokovic closes in on 1000-wins milestone

It was Djokovic's 20th win over Wawrinka - and 998th career victory - as he bids to become the fifth player to reach the 1000-win mark.

The World No.1 Djokovic will face Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime in the quarter-finals after the 21-year-old beat American Marcos Giron 6-3 6-2.

The news was not so good for Rafael Nadal, whose French Open hopes are in disarray after the Spaniard injured a foot in his third round loss to Canada's Denis Shapovalov.

At one point, the 35-year-old walked over and leaned on his towel box and grimaced in apparent pain. He also limped between points during the 1-6 7-5 6-2 defeat.

It was a worrisome scene for Nadal, especially with his favourite grand slam beginning at Roland Garros in just 10 days.

"I hurt my foot again with a lot of pain," Nadal said. "I'm a player living with an injury. It's nothing new. It's something that is there, unfortunately. Day by day is difficult.

"Lots of days I can't practise with the proper way again."

Rafa Nadal's French Open participation is in doubt after he struggled through a foot injury in his Italian Open third round loss. Pic: Getty/AAP
Rafa Nadal's French Open participation is in doubt after he struggled through a foot injury in his Italian Open third round loss. Pic: Getty/AAP

Elsewhere, Alexander Zverev chalked up a century of match wins at Masters 1000 events with his 6-3 7-6 (7-5) win over Australian No.1 Alex de Minaur.

World No.5 Stefanos Tsitsipas battled back from a set down to beat Russian Karen Khachanov 4-6 6-0 6-3.

with agencies

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