Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Netanyahu deletes tweet featuring photo of James Foley

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 22 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 22 August 2014

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Read more

FOCUS

Lifting the veil over China's air pollution

Read more

ENCORE!

Tango Takeover in Paris

Read more

WEB NEWS

Calls for ISIS media blackout after execution of James Foley

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Steely resolve of reporters exploited by pared-down employers'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

US judge calls Argentina bond swap offer illegal

Read more

  • ‘European GPS’ satellites launched into wrong orbit

    Read more

  • Merkel in Kiev as aid convoy ‘returns to Russia’

    Read more

  • Suicide bomber targets Iraq intelligence HQ in deadly attack

    Read more

  • Video: Israel bombs kidnapping suspect’s home

    Read more

  • US brands journalist’s beheading a ‘terrorist attack’

    Read more

  • Ebola prompts Philippines to recall UN troops in Liberia

    Read more

  • Besieged by problems, Hollande faces unhappy return from summer holidays

    Read more

  • US sued over ‘deportation mill’ in New Mexico

    Read more

  • Colombian army and FARC rebels in face-to-face talks

    Read more

  • US National Guard starts to pull out of embattled Ferguson

    Read more

  • PSG fall flat once more against Evian

    Read more

  • US job market yet to recover from recession, says Fed Chair

    Read more

  • August 22, 1914: The bloodiest day in French military history

    Read more

  • Central African Republic announces coalition cabinet

    Read more

  • French firebrand leftist to quit party presidency, but not politics

    Read more

  • Fear of Ebola sky-high among Air France workers

    Read more

  • US says Islamic State threat 'beyond anything we've seen'

    Read more

  • Interactive: Relive the Liberation of Paris in WWII

    Read more

Ruthless Nadal breezes into semis

Latest update : 2009-05-02

World number one and top seed Rafael Nadal progressed to the semi-finals of the ATP Rome Masters claycourt tournament after a gruelling 6-3, 6-3 victory against sixth seed Fernando Verdasco.

AFP - World number one and top seed Rafael Nadal progressed to the semi-finals of the ATP Rome Masters claycourt tournament after a gruelling 6-3, 6-3 victory against sixth seed Fernando Verdasco on Friday.
  
The scoreline did not do justice to a keenly contested match that lasted 1hr 50min and in which Verdasco had more than enough chances to cause an upset.
  
The final statistics told the story of a match in which the former three-time champion here Nadal took his opportunities while Verdasco let his slip by.
  
Verdasco hit 20 winners to just six by Nadal but made more than twice as many unforced errors -- 41 to just 20 from the world's best player.
  
And both men forced six break points throughout the match but while Nadal converted four of his, Verdasco managed only one break.
  
Nadal said he had to adapt to conditions that had changed from his night-time victory over Swede Robin Soderling the day before.
  
"Last night the court was slow; the ball was heavy. Today was completely different conditions, the ball was flying so much," he said.
  
"I liked the conditions of today but after the change from last night, it's a big change.
  
"Last night I played really well and today I didn't play my best. I made some mistakes, especially in the second set.
  
"The beginning, I had a lot of mistakes. The first set was okay, I did well. But in the second I was a little bit lucky, he made important mistakes in some important points."
  
Verdasco, the 25-year-old sixth seed, started badly, double faulting to hand Nadal a break in the opening game.
  
However, he hit straight back as Nadal played a dreadful service game and was broken to love.
  
The top seed soon clicked into gear, though, and broke Verdasco twice more to take the set.
  
The main difference in the opener was that Nadal was massacring Verdasco's second serve, winning 78 percent of the points when his compatriot missed his first service.
  
In the second set Verdasco had plenty of opportunities to get his nose in front but he missed three break point chances in the first game and two more at 2-2.
  
Even so, he was trading wilfully with Nadal from the back of the court and but for his high unforced error count he looked capable of beating the king of clay.
  
But at 4-3 to Nadal, Verdasco missed two simple volleys as he gifted his compatriot a break, despite having led 40-15.
  
He called for the trainer at the change of ends and his knee seemed to be giving him some pain, so it was unsurprising that he wilted easily in the final game.
  
Nadal took his win streak on clay to 28 matches since he was beaten here a year ago in the second round by Juan Carlos Ferrero.
  

Date created : 2009-05-01

COMMENT(S)