Federer delivers another hard-fought win in Shanghai

Novak Djokovic warns Rafael Nadal 'Year-End No.1 is one of ultimate goals'

Shanghai: Top seed and defending champion Roger Federer battled past in-form Russian Daniil Medvedev 6-4 4-6 6-4 to reach the last-16 at the Shanghai Masters on Wednesday.

The Serbian, who has burst back to form this year, winning Wimbledon and the US Open, broke the Frenchman in the fifth game on the way to a 6-3, 7-5 victory to ease into round three. "I was aggressive when I needed to be". Fourth-ranked Juan Martin del Potro, Alexander Zverev and Kei Nishikori all join Federer today in action.

Zhang's elimination left 18-year-old Wu Yibing the only Chinese player in this year's tournament.

Djokovic, who is eyeing Rafael Nadal's number one ranking, said, "I haven't won too many matches the beginning of the year".

Del Potro, the third seed, said he is suffering from a virus and reviewing his health "hour by hour", after laboring past France's Richard Gasquet.

Nikoloz Basilashvili, who lifted the Beijing title on Sunday, extended his winning streak to six matches by beating Canadian Denis Shapovalov 6-2 6-2 in just under an hour. "I'm happy to execute everything as I planned when playing against Jeremy".

"I was telling myself, particularly tonight I can not do this (lose) because they were there, but I don't know how much I draw from that, quite honestly".

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In the second set, both players looked pretty solid on serve despite Del Potro coughing profusely the whole time and Gasquet struggling with some blisters on his right foot as the set headed to a tiebreak.

"In the third set it was just hard, so I'm happy I got through somehow". Third seed Del Potro won four straight games from 3-5 down in the opening set before recovering from 2-6 deficit in the second set tiebreak to set up a third round meeting with Croatian Borna Coric.

He will face the young, Aussie No. 1 Alex De Minaur who defeated the flamboyant Frenchman Benoit Paire easily in straight, 6-4, 6-3 sets.

Wang Qiang, 26, and Zhang Shuai, 29, said confidence was now growing among Chinese players after a quiet spell since trailblazer Li, a two-time Grand Slam victor, retired in 2014.

Zverev will next play second-seeded Djokovic in the semifinals. China has seven WTA Tour-level tournaments this year.

Verdasco's behavior, for which he was handed a warning by the umpire, has prompted the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) to consider changing the rules to spare ball boys and girls from handing players a towel, instead of installing hooks on the court.

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