Djokovic to switch on 'young genes' - day nine preview

Novak Djokovic
Djokovic won the French Open in 2016, 2021 and 2023 [Getty Images]

Novak Djokovic says he needs to switch on his "young genes" to recover for his fourth-round match against Francisco Cerundolo at the French Open on Monday.

The world number one came through a five-set epic against Italy's Lorenzo Musetti that finished at 03:07 local time on Sunday.

It was the latest ever finish at the clay-court Grand Slam.

The contest did not start until 22:37 on Saturday after organisers rescheduled matches on Court Philippe Chatrier to deal with rain delays.

Djokovic saw out the victory after four hours and 29 minutes and the Serb will continue his title defence when he faces Argentina's 23rd seed Cerundolo, who has never reached the quarter-finals of a major.

The pair will play the third match on Roland Garros' main show court (not before 15:00 BST).

"There's beauty, as well, winning the match at 3.30am if it's the last one of the tournament," Djokovic said.

"But it's not so I'm going to have to switch on all of my young genes and try and recover as quick as possible."

Sabalenka and Rybakina face toughest tests so far

Aryna Sabalenka
Sabalenka has dropped just 13 games so far at Roland Garros [Getty Images]

Elena Rybakina, the fourth seed in the women's draw, will start proceedings on Chatrier at 10:00 BST when she takes on Elina Svitolina.

That will be followed by Australian Open champion Aryna Sabalenka's meeting with American Emma Navarro.

Second seed Sabalenka and Kazakhstan's Rybakina have both cruised through the tournament without dropping a set to date.

But the pair, who are seen as the main challengers to title favourite and two-time defending champion Iga Swiatek, will face a tougher test on Monday.

Ukrainian 15th seed Svitolina has a 2-1 win record against Rybakina, while Navarro, the 22nd seed, beat Sabalenka at Indian Wells in their first encounter earlier this year.

Italian 12th seed Jasmine Paolini and Russia's Elina Avanesyan will kick the day off on Court Suzanne Lenglen.

Russian teenager Mirra Andreeva and French home hope Varvara Gracheva will compete for the last quarter-final spot.

Elsewhere in the men's draw, Alexander Zverev and 13th seed Holger Rune will feature in the night session - not before 19:15 BST - on Chatrier.

Germany's Zverev avoided a shock exit on Sunday after coming through a nervy five-set thriller against Dutch 26th seed Tallon Griekspoor.

Russian fifth seed Daniil Medvedev faces Alex de Minaur of Australia, while two-time finalist Casper Ruud continues his search for a maiden Grand Slam title when he takes on American 12th seed Taylor Fritz.

In Monday's doubles action, Britain's Joe Salisbury and his American partner Rajeev Ram - seeded third - face French pair Lucas Pouille and Gregoire Barrere in the third round of the men's doubles.

They play first on Court Simonne Mathieu, before Salisbury later returns to the same court alongside Heather Watson in the second round of the mixed doubles.

The British pair take on fellow Briton Neal Skupski and American Desirae Krawczyk, who are seeded fourth.

Henry Patten is also in men's doubles third-round action on day nine, taking on Belgium duo Joran Vliegen and Sander Gille alongside his Finnish partner Harri Heliovaara.