On day six, the bottom half of the round of sixteen was mostly decided (sans the postponed match between Novak Djokovic and Juan Martin Del Potro), and now, following a thrilling day seven, the quarterfinals of the 2011 French Open are now set. It looks to be an action-packed set of sixteen with some very exciting matchups. At this point in the tournament, there are no American or Australian players left, with Mardy Fish being upset by Gilles Simon (tip of the hat to our editor, David Fucillo, for jinxing him) and Sam Querrey being eliminated in round two after picking up his first victory at Roland Garros.
There are, however, three Frenchmen remaining, with the ninth-seeded Gael Monfils making it and the aforementioned Gilles Simon (18 seed) beating Mardy Fish. Monfils seems to be better poised of the three compatriots to advance further, though both will have their hands full with their quarterfinal matchups. Monfils will be taking on David Ferrer, a man who is, at his best, able to beat the best, and at his worst, incredibly inconsistent ... which sounds an awful lot like Monfils. Simon is taking on the fifth-seed Robin Soderling, who is playing great tennis thus far.
The third, Richard Gasquet, will try to solve the Novak Djokovic puzzle ... don't hold your breath. That upset won't be happening, this writer will boldly claim, though we do seem to be surrounded by them, as Fernando Verdasco found himself eliminated in straight sets by the hard-serving Ivan Ljubicic. Rafael Nadal will be taking him on at the drop of the quarterfinal draw.
Several strong matchups await beyond those though, including Roger Federer versus Stanislas Wawrinka. Wawrinka just came back from two sets to love to beat Jo-Wilfriend Tsonga in three-straight sets. Federer just walked through the usually-tough Janko Tipsarevic. Smart money is on the Ferrer-Monfils matchup to be fireworks throughout, so be sure to check that out.
(1) Rafael Nadal versus Ivan Ljubicic
(18) Gilles Simon versus (5) Robin Soderling
(4) Andy Murray versus (15) Viktor Troicki
Alejandro Falla versus Juan Ignacio Chela
(7) David Ferrer versus (9) Gael Monfils
(14) Stanislas Wawrinka versus (3) Roger Federer
Fabio Fognini versus Albert Montanes
(13) Richard Gasquet versus (2) Novak Djokovic