• VTR Open

Nadal overwhelms compatriot to reach semis

ESPN staff
February 8, 2013
Rafael Nadal breezed into the semi-finals on Friday © Getty Images

World No. 5 Rafael Nadal continued the winning start to his comeback - and, perhaps equally importantly, avoided any injury flare-ups - as he defeated fellow Spaniard Daniel Gimeno-Traver to reach the semi-finals of the VTR Open.

After breezing the first set against an opponent he had beaten comprehensively on his only previous meeting Nadal, perhaps mindful of a doubles match to be played later in the day, struggled to kill off the match in the second set, before eventually getting the break he needed to complete a 6-1 6-4 win.

Nadal's serve was on song from the start, and enabled him to breeze to the first set without difficulty. But the second set saw Gimeno-Traver up his play as he went for broke with more regularity - forcing Nadal to respond in kind.

In the end, however, Nadal had the extra class in reserve as he completed the straight sets success.

Elsewhere, Horacio Zeballos continued his surprising run in the competition - as he beat fifth seed Albert Ramos 6-1 5-7 7-6(6)

The Argentine will now place compatriot Carlos Berlocq for a place in the final. Berlocq should be well rested for their meeting, after scheduled opponent Guillaume Rufin was forced to withdraw prior to their quarter-final with an abdominal strain.

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