The match lasted 2 hours and 10 minutes and it was Nishikori who broke his opponent at the beginning of the first set. Nadal upped his game and managed to get the break back. The Japanese still looked like he can keep up the pace with Nadal, but the Spaniard’s endurance finally broke Nishikori and the world no.2 took the first set 6-4.
It was a bit worrying when Nadal called for a trainer in the ninth game of the first set to examine his left leg, but it didn’t seem to be that serious and the Spaniard got off to a quick 3-0 lead at the start of the second set. He was serving for the match at 5-3, but allowed Nishikori to come back into the match. The Japanese couldn’t confirm the break in the very next game as he was serving to stay in the match, so it was Nadal who clinched the second set and the match.
Nadal’s next opponent will be the winner of the match between the Frenchman Tsonga and Florian Mayer of Germany.
Also through to the quarters in the Serbian Janko Tipsarevic, who beat Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria 7-6 (3) 6-2.
Tipsarevic will play either British no.1 Murray or Frenchman Simon next.