NADAL ON TRACK FOR FEDERER BATTLE
Spaniard outplays Sock in last eight
MIAMI start of the second but was unable to take advantage of a double break that could have put him 3-0 up.
Instead Nadal pulled back to 2-2 and with Sock failing to make the most of a chance of further break points it was comfortable in the end.3
The 30-year-old Spaniard has never won in Miami despite being a four-time finalist and he expects plenty of work to get past Fognini and make it a fifth appearance.
“We know each other very well. He has beaten me a couple of times and so it will be a good test. I am happy to be in the semifinals but it will be a tough one and I will need to play my best,” said Nadal.
Fognini has three wins from 10 meetings with the Spaniard, the most recent coming on clay in Rio de Janiero in 2015.
The 29-year-old World No 40 showed plenty of confidence as he took the game to his Japanese opponent from the outset.
It was the Italian’s first victory in three attempts over Nishikori
I am happy to be in the semi-finals but it will be a tough one and I will need to play my best.
and his first Masters series quarter-final win since 2013, when he reached the last four in MonteCarlo.
Nishikori earlier said he had not felt fully in top shape for the contest.
“I wasn’t 100 per cent, physically, I mean, it was tough conditions for me,” he said, referring to the heat on the mid-afternoon Key Biscayne centre court.
“But it was also same for him, too. He was playing a lot of the long matches, but I think he still played good enough to beat me today,” he added.
Fognini, who was cheered on by his friend, former Italy footballer Christian Vieri, said he had come through a demanding test.
“It wasn’t easy and I was just focused on my game. I am very happy, I’m in the semi-final, I’m playing well and I feel good again on the court,” he said.
Federer took on Czech tenthseed Tomas Berdych late yesterday while the last quarter-final pitted Germany’s Alexander Zverev against Australia’s Nick Kyrgios. AFP
Rafael Nadal in action against Jack Sock during their quarterfinal in the Miami Open on Wednesday.