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Djokovic gets walkover into Madrid semis after Nishikori withdrawal

20 Mai 2017

Fifth seed Milos Raonic is also into the last 16 as he got the better of a battle between two big servers 6-4, 6-4 over Gilles Muller.

He's won ten straight, lost just one set in that time and now has an all-time record of 51 claycourt titles, which may well become 52 by week's end.

"Most things weren't working particularly well".

"Maybe I was lucky the roof closed", Djokovic said.

Nadal was below his best and it was not until he took a decisive break in the final game, just after having his own set broken that the match was finally decided. "I wasn't building any points really". Coric, who has hit a decent run of form here since getting a chance as a lucky loser to come into the main draw could spring another upset if he continues to play the way he did, forcing Murray into long exchanges.

"It's a huge win, for sure".

"It will be a very hard match against one of the best sportsmen this sport has ever had, and to have a chance I'll have to be at my very best", Nadal said. "I have noticed it from the beginning". When you win every single match in every tournament, that is abnormal. He won his first career title in Marrakech, Morocco, last month.

That was squandered after an errant backhand and, from there on out, the Serb was beginning to display all the qualities that characterized his period of dominance previous year.

23-year-old Thiem broke the Croatian in the seventh game of the second set and then routinely held his serve to close out the match.

Novak Djokovic of Serbia celebrates his victory over Feliciano Lopez of Spain on day six of the Madrid Open. "I don't know what's going to happen", Nadal said.

"I can not promise to play or pull out right now. Winning is very important but also the way I'm playing at the moment makes me very relaxed".

Nishikori faces David Ferrer next, who progressed as Jo-Wilfried Tsonga withdrew with a shoulder injury. He defeated Andy Murray in that final, but in the five tournaments and 12 tour matches since, he has not beaten any player ranked higher than No 19. He withdrew from Barcelona last month because of a right wrist injury. The Serbian might be low on confidence, but his trusty backhand can easily neutralise Nadal's top-spin forehand.

"It's going to be a very tough match against one of the best players in tennis history", Nadal said.

Nadal will face holder Djokovic - a walkover victor against Kei Nishikori - next as he bids for a fifth title at the ATP Masters 1000 event in his home capital.

In another quarterfinal, Pablo Cuevas of Uruguay rallied to beat Alexander Zverev of Germany 3-6 6-0 6-4.

"I feel a little bit unusual".

Halep will play Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia, who defeated Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands 6-3, 6-3.

Halep with face in-form Frenchwoman Kristina Mladenovic or Svetlana Kuznetsova in Saturday's final. Mladenovic will play eighth-seeded Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russian Federation, who easily defeated Canadian Eugenie Bouchard 6-4, 6-0.

Djokovic gets walkover into Madrid semis after Nishikori withdrawal