Three-time champion Rafael Nadal beat 17th seed Reilly Opelka 7-6(3), 7-6(5) on Wednesday to book a quarterfinal clash with Nick Kyrgios at the ATP Indian Wells Masters. The Australian moved through after Italian Jannik Sinner was forced to withdraw from their match due to illness.
Opelka served nine aces to Rafa’s six but our champ used all of his experience to advance.
Rafa, playing in his fourth tournament of the year, is now 18-0. The run includes his record 21st Grand Slam title in Australia. Extending the best season start of his career, our champ is into the Indian Wells quarterfinals for the 12th time.
After the match, Rafa said:
“He is one of the toughest opponents on Tour. It is very tough to control his weapons with his serve and forehand. I think I played my best match of the tournament so far today. I am very pleased with how I was able to win the match, with two difficult tie-breaks. This victory means a lot to me.”