• Rio Open

Nadal breezes through in Rio

ESPN staff
February 21, 2014
Nadal cruises in Rio

Rafael Nadal continued his comeback from a back injury with a 6-1 6-2 win over fellow Spaniard Albert Montanes to move into the quarter-finals of the Rio Open on Thursday.

Nadal tweaked his back warming up before last month's Australian Open final, which he lost against Stanislas Wawrinka.

Wearing a large, blue brace on his lower back as a precaution, Nadal moved freely against Montanes to ease to victory. Nadal has used the words "cautious" to describe his return, and said he was a "bit afraid" as he begins the comeback.

Fabio Fognini made the last eight with a 7-6(1) 4-6 6-3 victory over Pablo Cuevas. David Ferrer advanced on Wednesday.

Alexandr Dolgopolov advanced to his second quarter-final of the year, beating Facundo Bagnis 6-7(4) 6-2 7-6(4).

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