Rafael Nadal booked a ticket for his 13th birthday Australian Open quarter-finals with a direct win against Fabio Fognini

After a 6: 3, 6: 4, 6: 2 win against his Italian rival, the Spaniard meets the rising star Stefanos Tsitsipas, who has benefited from a Matteo Berrettini stomach strain

Although Nadal didn’t drop a set in the first four rounds and has overcome a back ailment that plagued his summer, he doesn’t think he’s any better able to claim his second Australian Open title than he was last year Dominic Thiem blew the Spaniard down last year

“My preparation this year was probably worse than last year,” said Nadal

???? I’ve had a problem in my back for the past 19, 20 days but I’ve found a way to be where I am today and I feel better without a doubt I took a step forward today that’s something I needed I have to do another one against Tsitsipas for Wednesdayâ ????

Before the clash on Monday, Nadal had a head-to-head advantage of 12: 4 against 16 The pair had met seven times on the hard court.Fognini had only won one of these competitions after losing two sets at the 2015 US Open to stun the Spanish superstar

The Italian was never really hoping to improve that head-to-head record. The difference between the two was both mental and physical

Fognini broke Nadal in the first and second sentence. After both pauses, Nadal immediately broke back

There were signs that Fognini’s game against Alex de Minaur wasn’t strong In this game, the Italian played flawless tennis until it mattered

He was broken the first time he tried to serve for the match.Luckily, he had a second break up his sleeve the second time he turned shaky match points into a berth for the fourth round

Fognini won two out of six breakpoints in the first two sets, but immediately relieved the pressure gauge because he couldn’t consolidate.He never had a chance to consolidate in the third and last set

The Spaniard exerted relentless pressure with his forehand The forehand turned inside out remains his favorite weapon It was destructive

There was also no evidence of a back injury in which Nadal missed the ATP Cup

Daniil Medvedev and Tsitsipas have been discussed as challengers to Novak Djokovic’s stranglehold at the Australian Open, but Nadal has yet to drop one more sentence in the first four rounds

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Tsitsipas, Matteo Berrettini, Berrettini, Stefanos Tsitsipas

World news – AU – Nadal, Tsitsipas meet in quarters when Berrettini succumbs to an injury

Source: https://www.theage.com.au/sport/tennis/nadal-tsitsipas-to-clash-in-quarter-finals-after-berrettini-succumbs-to-injury-20210215-p572o0.html