Glyn Kirk/AFP/Getty Images
Novak Djokovic beats Jeremy Chardy in straight sets
Australia’s Bernard Tomic puts out ninth seed Richard Gasquet
David Ferrer survives five-set marathon to make last 16
Serena Williams on course in her title defense
Novak Djokovic gave a perfect illustration of why he’s the top ranked player in the world as he dismantled France’s Jeremy Chardy to reach the Wimbledon fourth round Saturday.
The Serbian made it look ominously easy against an opponent seeded 28th for the grass court grand slam and ran out a 6-3 6-2 6-2 winner in a shade under an hour and a half.
The match statistics revealed he did not make a single unforced error until the sixth game of the third set when he double faulted on his own service and winners flowed freely from his racket, nearly 40 in all.
Chardy, who has upset a number of leading players in his career, British hope and No.2 seed Andy Murray included, was simply outclassed on Centre Court.
Djokovic, bidding to add to his single title at SW19, won in his outstanding year of 2011, will go into the fourth round and second week with confidence on a high.
The Australian Open champion will play German veteran Tommy Haas for a place in the quarterfinals after the 13th seed beat Feliciano Lopez of Spain, 4-6 6-2 7-5 6-4.
Big-hitting Czech Tomas Berdych is also in Djokovic’s section of the draw and he came through after a four-set battle with Kevin Anderson of South Africa, 3-6 6-3 6-4 7-5.
The seventh seed must first get past unseeded young Australian Bernard Tomic, who underlined his potential by dispatching ninth ranked Richard Gasquet of France.
After his 7-6 5-7 7-5 7-6 win over Gasquet, Tomic said he was confident of repeating the dose.
“Now I’m playing someone different, Tomas Berdych, who is a very, very good player. I’m going to have to study up on that, work with my team and my dad to give myself the best chance of winning,” he said.
Tomic’s father John is barred from the All England Club after an alleged assault in Madrid on his son’s former practice partner Thomas Drouet, but they have been working together outside of the grounds, the world number 59 revealed.
Spain’s David Ferrer had to battle long and hard to clinch his place in the last 16 after a five-set tussle with Ukraine’s Alexandr Dolgopolov.
The never say die fourth seed had to come from two sets to one down before clinching the decider 6-2. Ferrer lost in the French Open final earlier this month to compatriot Rafael Nadal, who suffered a shock defeat on the first day of the championship.
Defending men’s champion Roger Federer followed him through the exit door on Wednesday, leaving the way apparently clear for Djokovic and Murray, both of whom have been impeccable form in the first week.
In the women’s singles, top seed Serena Williams was an equally emphatic winner against 42-year-old Kimiko Date-Krumm of Japan.
Williams, bidding for her 17th grand slam title in her Wimbledon defense, was only briefly troubled by her veteran opponent before racing to a 6-2 6-0 win under the Centre Court roof late Saturday.
She will next play Sabine Lisicki after the German accounted for Australia’s Sam Stosur.
Earlier, the home crowd were left to celebrate the passage of 19-year-old Laura Robson to the last 16 after she beat New Zealand’s Marina Erakovic, 1-6, 7-5, 6-3 on a packed Court Two.
2011 champion Petra Kvitova, the eighth seed, and with a golden opportunity in her section of the draw after the exits of Maria Sharapova and Victoria Azarenka, battled past Russian Ekaterina Makarova 6-3 2-6 6-3.