Melbourne: Defending champion Novak Djokovic repulsed a tenacious fightback from Lleyton Hewitt to join last year's finalist Andy Murray in the quarter-finals of the Australian Open on Monday.
The Serb world number one was tested for the first time and dropped his only set of the tournament so far before extinguishing Hewitt's challenge, 6-1, 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 in almost three hours.
Djokovic will now face Spanish fifth seed David Ferrer in Wednesday's quarter-finals after Ferrer's straight-sets win over Frenchman Richard Gasquet.
The Serbian world number one was in command for the opening two sets before the fiercely competitive Australian veteran hit back, taking the match into a fourth set.
"It was a really big challenge for me tonight to see where I stand," Djokovic said. "I think I've been handling it really well because I could easily get my emotions out as I usually did."