Rafael Nadal earned his fourteenth Australian Open quarterfinal appearance with a win over Japanese star Kei Nishikori in straight sets.
Nadal was victorious, defeating the Japanese number-one player 6-2 and 7-5. The world number one has improved his record to 20 wins and just one loss against Nishikori.
It is not yet clear whether or not Nadal can defeat Grigor Dimitrov on Sunday and reach the final, but he certainly looks confident after such a promising match!
After winning six games in a row midway through the first set, it seemed as if Nadal was going to cruise by as usual; however, Nishikori fought back, winning his own service game to love and earning himself four break points against Nadal’s serve.
Fortunately for the Spaniard, he was able to fight off these opportunities before eventually closing out the opening set with a comfortable 6-2 scoreline.
The second set was much more competitive as Nishikori broke Nadal’s serve three times en route to a 5-4 lead. However, none of these breaks were enough to earn him the win as Nadal fought back each time before finally sealing the victory after two hours and 15 minutes. He will take on Grigor Dimitrov in the quarterfinal round on Sunday!
Nadal has made 14 Australian Open quarterfinal appearances throughout his career which is the ninth-most in the Open Era. He will aim to make it fifteen on Sunday against the Bulgarian.
Nadal has had a very good record over Dimitrov following their last meeting at the Laver Cup just two months ago, where he won in three sets. This is certainly going to be an exciting match and you should all watch! The winner of this quarterfinal matchup will take on either Tomas Berdych or Roger Federer in what promises to be a promising semifinal appearance!