Third seed Rafael Nadal moved to within one win of an Olympic medal shot after battling past Gilles Simon to reach the men’s singles quarter-finals. He was made to fight by his French opponent but he eventually ran out a 7-6(5), 6-3 victor in Rio de Janeiro. An emotional celebration after match point once again showed just how much this Olympics means to our champ.
After the match, Rafa said:
Always the winner of the first set gives you confidence. I started strong in the second—that was the difference. Gilles is a great player. Sometimes you don’t know whether to hit strong or less power to hit the rhythm. I think I did (that well).
The passion for what I am doing, the passion for the sport and the motivation to keep doing what I really like (is key). I like to compete in the world of tennis and I think we’re very lucky people to live the tennis tour and life we have. (via Tennis Now)
Rafa will face tomorrow either Brazil’s unseeded Thomaz Bellucci or Belgium’s 8th-seeded David Goffin.
Our champ will double up with Marc Lopez to face Daniel Nestor and Vasek Pospisil on Court 3 later in the men’s doubles semifinals, before teaming with Garbine Muguruza against Lucie Hradecka and Radek Stepanek in the mixed after that.
Rafa on playing doubles with Marc:
Next match for me is very important. We play for the chance to win a medal with one of my best friends so we gonna try our best. (via Tennis Now)