Following a decent showing on Tuesday evening, world No. 2 Rafael Nadal is now through to the fourth round of the Indian Wells Masters event, where he will meet France’s Gilles Simon. The two competitors have previously met on six occasions, with the Spaniard leading the head-to-head series 6-1.
In a match that was far from his best performance this year, the tournament’s third seed beat Donald Young in straight set in the third round of the Masters 1000 event. While the scoreline ended 6-4, 6-2, it featured a competitive opening set, even though the American faded as the match went on. In the end, Nadal converted six break points to close out the match in 80 minutes.
“Last year is 2014; we are in 2015,” said Nadal. “We cannot think about what happened last year in every round and in every tournament. Every year is different.”
Nadal will come up against France’s Gilles Simon, who defeated Michael Berrer in straight sets 6-2, 7-5 to advance to the fourth round berth with the Spaniard. He struck four aces, won 66% of his first service points and converted five break points to end the match in a total of 83 minutes.
“I like playing here – I love the players, I love the organization, I love the fans here and I feel very comfortable,” Nadal added. “I’m happy to be in the fourth round… Tomorrow I have a tough match against Simon. He’s tough, a good player.”
This marks the eighth time these two competitors will meet on the ATP World Tour, with Nadal leading the head-to-head series 6-1. Rafa has won their last four consecutive matches and will likely maintain that momentum when they cross paths on Wednesday evening. Now that he has survived a repeat of his early exit from Indian Wells last season, Nadal is more than capable of a deep run at the tournament.
Prediction: Rafael Nadal in Straight Sets
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