Rafael Nadal celebrated a tough win at the Australian Open over Gael Monfils
Nadal had not made it to the last eight of a major tournament since the French Open in 2015.
But he continued his recent resurgence on in Melbourne by beating Monfils 6-3, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4.
However, he was under no illusions about how close he came to letting Monfils back into the match.
"Gael is a special player," said Nadal.
"He can play unbelievable shots and is one of the more charismatic players.
Gael Monfils puled a set back but was unable to mount a serious comeback
"Seeing him in the top ranking places is great for the sport.
"I had chances in the third and didn’t take them so it's dangerous.
“He had some huge serves and you are under problems against a big player like him.
Rafael Nadal eventually triumphed over Gael Monfils to book a quarter-final place
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"Coming back I know I keep having some chances and then at 5-4 with his serve under pressure I had my chances.
"To be in a quarter-final at a Grand Slam is very special for me, especially here in Australia where it feels a little bit like home."
The world No 9 has looked rejuvenated in Melbourne and stands as a genuine contender to seal a 15th Grand Slam triumph.
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To do so, he will now have to overcome third seed Milos Raonic, the big-serving Canadian who had earlier beaten Spain's Roberto Bautista Agut 7-6, 3-6, 6-4, 6-1.
The bottom half's other quarter-final will pitch Belgium's David Goffin against Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov.
Goffin beat Dominic Thiem 5-7, 7-6, 6-2, 6-2 while Dimitrov knocked out Djokovic's conqueror Denis Istomin 2-6, 7-6, 6-2, 6-1.