Rafael Nadal eases into the quarterfinals with a comfortable win over Kevin Anderson
Rafael Nadal beat big-serving South African Kevin Anderson 7-5, 6-1, 6-4 to advance to the quarterfinals at the Australian Open. The first set was evenly contested with both players not giving anything away in their service games. Anderson tried to attack the backhand of Nadal on numerous occasions, but the Spaniard had answers to each of them as he went crosscourt to hit those ferocious winners. The No. 3 seed stood 4 m beyond the baseline to receive Anderson’s serve and tackled it without much difficulty.
Nadal was in trouble at 0-40 in the 11th game, but hit two aces and a couple of backhand winners as he saved five break points to lead 6-5. Anderson struggled on his next service game and Nadal capitalised to take the set 7-5.
The 14-time Grand slam champion was in his elements in the second set as he won 87% of his first serves and converted both his break point opportunities to go with his 10 winners. Anderson won just 42% of his first serve points and hit nine unforced errors to trail by two sets against the Spaniard.
Nadal broke in the third game of the third set and never looked back as he registered impressive figures on both his first and second serves to seal the set 6-4 and move into the quarterfinals of the Australian Open.
He will take on Tomas Berdych in the quarterfinals.