PHOTOS: Rafael Nadal defeats Kei Nishikori to advance to quarterfinals at Australian Open

Rafael Nadal defeated Kei Nishikori 7-6(3), 7-5, 7-6(3) to advance to the quarterfinals at the Australian Open. His opponent will be Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria, who is through to his first quarterfinal at a grand slam ever.

The first set started with an early lead for Rafa, with a break in the first game and a hold. Nishikori broke back to get back on serve. A grueling game at 2-3 almost gave Nishikori a second break; however, Rafa consolidated to even it out. An intense exchange resulted in a tie breaker, which Rafa won 7-6(3). The second set started even, and seemed ominous when Rafa had a trainer come out on court for his blistered hand. Later in the set, Rafa took a tumble and roll across the court, the only casualty being his shoelaces, much to everyone’s relief. Despite being a break down at one point, Rafa bulldozed back into the set with a break and took it at 7-5. The third set was a roller coaster, going in Rafa’s favor until mid-set. A time violation, several BPs and a set point saved, and a visibly angry Rafa made for a highly memorable R4 at this year’s Australian Open.

Rafa is just three wins away from a monumental second Australian Open title, which will complete his second career grand slam. All the best, Rafa! This is your slam to win! Vamos!

8 comments

  1. Desde Canarias, C. Javier confía y apuesta fuertemente por/para la Gran Victoria otra vez en Australia. Força para ello te sobra y desde aquí ¡¡Visca Rafa!! porque eres y seras un Campeón en toda regla. Abrazos de afecto.

  2. He didnt play like he did with Gael. I am just glad he did enough to get him into the quarter-finals. Come on Rafa, you can go all the way and bite that trophy! Vamos!

  3. Thank you for sending these posts. I appreciate the time and effort involved. Rafa did not appear to be his usual self today but came through like a true champion. I never used to tweet but thanks to Rafa I started. I am glad I did to see so much enthusiasm and support makes me want to get more involved too. So thanks Rafa and thank for keeping us updated. Vamos..

  4. Rafa did not play well and missed sitting ducks at times. He will not get away with better players, especially Federer, Murray and if …. Djokovic. Much improvement required. go for the kill. R.S.

  5. I saw the second set and must say Rafa did not play very well at all. He found the solution to beat Kei, but if he plays like this against better players, it will be a straight set defeat. Quite a bit to think about and a lot of room for improvement. Vamos Rafa!

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