Eleven-time champion Rafael Nadal has booked his place in the semifinals of the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters by beating Guido Pella 7-6(1), 6-3 this afternoon.
Rafa, who found himself one point away from a 1-5 deficit on three occasions in the first set, is now within two wins of his 12th title at the Monte-Carlo Country Club. Nadal converted seven of 13 break points to advance after two hours and 20 minutes.
After the match, Rafa said:
It was a very tough first set. Physically and mentally. Losing the first three games on serve was tough. But I found a way at the right time. I was lucky at 4-1 that he had two points to 5-1. If it was 5-1 it would be almost impossible. I was lucky to escape that moment and then I played better.
I finished the first set playing well and started the second set well. I played a terrible game serving for the match but I am very happy to be through. To be in the semi-finals here means a lot to me after all the things that’s happened.
Our champ now owns an astonishing 48-2 winning record against lefties on clay and has won 25 straight sets in Monte-Carlo.
The victory sets up a last-four meeting between Rafa and the winner of the quarterfinal match between Fabio Fognini and Borna Coric.
Source: ATP Tour