Nadal overcomes eye injury to earn place in China Open semi-finals

Jonathan Hernandez
October 8, 2017

Rafael Nadal advanced to the final eight at the China Open in Beijing on Thursday, defeating Karen Khachanov of Russian Federation 6-3, 6-3.

Dimitrov improved to 38-15 on the season after he defeated fifth seed Bautista Agut of Spain 7-6 (5), 4-6, 6-2 in the quarter-finals over two hours and 29 minutes.

One set down and trailing 4-6 in the second set tie break, the 2017 US Open champion had to save two match points, to come back in the contest winning four straight points.

Nadal looked better in his second round victory over Karen Khachanov, winning by a 6-3, 6-3 scoreline while avenging a loss to American John Isner from last week's Laver Cup, taking out the big-serving Isner 6-4, 7-6 (0) in the quarterfinals.

There were frequent flashes of brilliance from Nadal early on, but the match really sprung to life as Dimitrov responded impressively to a nightmare start in the second set.

Australia's Nick Kyrgios will face Russia's Andrey Rublev or Germany's Alexander Zverev in the other match.

"He played so aggressive, having a lot of success, hitting a lot of winners, returning very well".

In the third set, Nadal proved to be too strong starting with an immediate break on a curling forehand into the open court. "I'm not going to lie". He's playing well. He had a good victory today.

The Spaniard leads Dimitrov 8-1 in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series. "Maybe I still do have energy to play", she said. That's important for me. "And I have few more dreams in my career". "I changed the tactic and worked pretty well". But back to the match, I think I also had too many chances at some point.

"It is true that the calendar is tough, but at the same time it is true that Federer has 36 years, I think, I have 31, Novak 30, Andy 30, Nishikori, I don't know, 27".

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