The Serb was at his scintillating best in swatting aside flat-hitting Frenchman Adrian Mannarino 6-0, 6-0, 6-3, in his first day match at the Australian Open in over 1,000 days. The first two sets lasted just 69 minutes, with Djokovic committing a grand total of just 12 unforced errors.
By the time Mannarino came to play, the match was all over as a contest. Djokovic secured the lone break of the third set midway through and cruised to victory. After dropping a set in each of his first two matches and appearing to be ailing, Djokovic delivered a masterful performance on Sunday.
Mannarino's extra mileage in Melbourne proved his own undoing. He had played a trio of five-setters to qualify for a spot in the second week, a run which included a terrific win over 21-year-old Ben Shelton. But he looked worn out and heavy-legged in the fourth round, and Djokovic sensed blood.
The 36-year-old played himself into form and has tied longtime rival Roger Federer for another record. Djokovic's passage to the last eight in Melbourne was the 58th time he has reached that stage at a Grand Slam. This is the same number as Federer.
The two men are now clear of those closest to them. Third on the list is Rafael Nadal, who has managed 47 quarterfinal appearances at a Grand Slam, with American greats Jimmy Connors (41) and Andre Agassi (36) occupying fourth and fifth spots, respectively.
Djokovic has set up a quarterfinal meeting against USA's No. 1 Taylor Fritz. The defending champion has an unblemished 8-0 record against the big-serving Californian, but he'll be wary of the last time he played him in Melbourne three years ago, where he needed five sets to get through.