Nadal blasts past Monfils
Melbourne - World No 1 Rafael Nadal powered past Frenchman Gael Monfils to reach the fourth round of the Australian Open in an impressive performance on Saturday.
The 13-time Grand Slam champion was too strong for the 25th-seeded Monfils, winning 6-1, 6-2, 6-3 in just over two hours on Rod Laver Arena.
Nadal will next face Japanese 16th seed Kei Nishikori in the fourth round. Nishikori earlier knocked out American Donald Young in straight sets.
The Spanish top seed is bidding to win his second Australian Open title and become only the third man to win each of the four Grand Slam titles twice, after Australians Roy Emerson and Rod Laver.
Nadal played his best match in the tournament and was relentless in breaking the flashy Frenchman's service six times in a dynamic display.
The Spaniard hit 21 winners and just 18 unforced errors, while Monfils made 57 unforced errors with his all-or-nothing shot-making.
It was Nadal's 10th win in 12 encounters with Monfils to put him into the second week of the tournament.
There was some concern early in the second set when Nadal was limping on his right foot after winning a rally, but he continued on in the match with no apparent discomfort.
Nadal is looking to win his 14th Grand Slam title and equal American Pete Sampras on the list of all-time Grand Slam title holders.
He is currently third behind Roger Federer (17).
Results from the Australian Open on Saturday (x denotes seeding):
Stephane Robert (FRA) bt Martin Klizan (SVK) 6-0, 7-6 (7/2), 6-4
Roger Federer (SUI x6) bt Teymuraz Gabashvili (RUS) 6-2, 6-2, 6-3
Grigor Dimitrov (BUL x22) bt Milos Raonic (CAN x11) 6-3, 3-6, 6-4, 7-6 (12/10)
Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP) bt Benoit Paire (FRA x27) 6-2, 6-1, 6-4
Andy Murray (GBR x4) bt Feliciano Lopez (ESP x26) 7-6 (7/2), 6-4, 6-2
Kei Nishikori (JPN x16) bt Donald Young (USA) 7-5, 6-1, 6-0
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA x10) bt Gilles Simon (FRA x18) 7-6 (7/5), 6-4, 6-2
Rafael Nadal (ESP x1) bt Gael Monfils (FRA x25) 6-1, 6-2, 6-3
Simona Halep (ROM x11) bt Zarina Diyas (KAZ) 6-1, 6-4
Dominika Cibulkova (SVK x20) bt Carla Suarez Navarro (ESP x16) 6-1, 6-0
Jelena Jankovic (SRB x8) bt Kurumi Nara (JPN) 6-4, 7-5
Maria Sharapova (RUS x3) bt Alize Cornet (FRA x25) 6-1, 7-6 (8/6)
Sloane Stephens (USA x13) bt Elina Svitolina (UKR) 7-5, 6-4
Agnieszka Radwanska (POL x5) bt Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (RUS x29) 5-7, 6-2, 6-2
Garbine Muguruza (ESP) bt Caroline Wozniacki (DEN x10) 4-6, 7-5, 6-3
Victoria Azarenka (BLR x2) bt Yvonne Meusburger (AUT) 6-1, 6-0