Top seed Federer, Zverev and Monfils into last 16

Defending champion Roger Federer advanced to the Wimbledon last 16 without dropping a set after a 6-3 7-5 6-2 win over German Jan-Lennard Struff on Friday.

Federer, seeking a record ninth Wimbledon title, eased through the first set before the big-serving Struff put up more of a fight in the second.

But Federer clinched it with a superb service game that included a wonderful volley at the end of a long rally followed by a winning drive down the line.

The 36-year-old Swiss proceeded to win his 29th consecutive set at the All England Club and wrap up victory on Centre Court in just over one and a half hours. Place bet on LIVE games on NaijaBet

“Against big servers who go for a lot it’s always difficult to find rhythm and be sure that you are in driver’s seat until the match is over,” Federer said.

“I was happy to stay calm and finish off the job. I thought I did very well today. I created more chances in the second set and was always able to stay pretty clean on my own service game.

“It’s a wonderful feeling walking out there, I take every match one at a time, I try to put on a good match, try hard every time, and will never underestimate anybody – that keeps me in check.”

Alexander Zverev avoided a shock Wimbledon exit as the world No 3 battled back to beat American youngster Taylor Fritz.6-4, 5-7, 6-7 (0/7), 6-1, 6-2 .

Zverev had just lost the third set when bad light forced play to be suspended late on Thursday evening.

But the 21-year-old German has plenty of practice at scrambling out of trouble after three times winning from two sets to one down at the recent French Open.

He staged another impressive escape act on Court One, winning the final two sets to move into the third round.

Zverev will face Latvian qualifier Ernests Gulbis for a place in the last 16.

After enjoying the best Grand Slam run of his career when he made the French Open quarterfinals last month, Zverev is hoping to reach the last eight at Wimbledon for the first time.

He was beaten in the fourth round last year.

Following early exits for Swiss 16th seed Borna Coric and Canadian world number 25 Denis Shapovalov, Zverev’s win was a boost for the group of young prodigies branded the sport’s ‘NextGen’ stars by the ATP.

Like Zverev, the 20-year-old Fritz is a former junior world No 1 ear-marked for great things but yet to truly arrive at the highest level.

Fritz, ranked 68th, has strong tennis genes as his mother Kathy reached the Wimbledon last 16 in 1977.

But, looking for first win over a top five player, he let Zverev off the hook with a disappointing collapse.

Unseeded Frenchman Gael Monfils tamed the power of American Sam Querrey to reach the Wimbledon fourth round for the first time having previously fallen six times in the third round.

It looked like being a familiar story for the 31-year-old when 11th seed Querrey bombed down nine aces to win the opening set but crowd-pleaser Monfils responded with some dazzling tennis to win 5-7 6-4 6-4 6-2 on Centre Court.

Monfils levelled the match with an ace of his own after breaking for a 5-3 lead in the second set.

A forehand pass gave him the breakthrough midway through the third set and Querrey’s resistance faded in the heat as Monfils raced through the fourth set in 23 minutes.

He will face eighth seed Kevin Anderson next.