Defending champion Novak Djokovic repulsed a tenacious fightback from Lleyton Hewitt to join last year's finalist Andy Murray in the quarter-finals of the Australian Open yesterday.
Djokovic returns to Hewitt. Pic/AFP
The Serb World No 1 was tested for the first time and dropped his only set of the tournament so far before extinguishing Hewitt's challenge, 6-1, 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 in almost three hours.
Djokovic will now face Spanish fifth seed David Ferrer in Wednesday's quarter-finals after Ferrer's straight-sets win over Frenchman Richard Gasquet.
Murray, the British fourth seed, was on court for only 49 minutes before his Kazakh opponent Mikhail Kukushkin retired early in the third set with a hip flexor injury.
Kukushkin pulled out while trailing 6-1, 6-1, 1-0.
Nishikori stuns Tsonga Japan's Kei Nishikori will be Murray's surprise opponent in the quarters after his stunning five-set victory over former finalist Jo-Wilfried Tsonga on Monday. Nishikori became the first Japanese man into the Australian quarter-finals in 80 years when he upset the French sixth seed, 2-6, 6-2, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3 in scorching conditions to earn a place in the last eight.