Nadal cruises into Monte Carlo final

Zverev was in a bad mood all match. Image Getty

Zverev was in a bad mood all match. Image Getty

He, thereby, reached his 13th semi-final in Monte-Carlo on the back of his 66th win in the French principality.

Japan's Kei Nishikori hits a return to Germany's Alexander Zverev during their semi final match at the Monte-Carlo ATP Masters Series tournament on April 21, 2018 in Monaco.

This is published unedited from the ANI feed.

Meanwhile, Nadal, who is yet to drop a set this clay season, is scheduled to cross the swords with Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov for a place in the final.

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"But then one day trying things, trying treatments, one day things are going better, no?"

"In our sport, there is not much time to stop and think about the things that have happened or not happened". Nadal has won nine of 11 career meetings to date, though Nishikori took the most recent matchup - the bronze medal match at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

While Nishikori produced a spirited performance to clinch a 6-4, 6-7 (1-7), 6-3 win over Croatia's Marin Cilic in their last-eight clash, Zverev stormed into semi-finals with a 4-6, 6-2, 7-5 win over France's Richard Gasquet. But he needed treatment on his right knee after the first point of the next game, and was broken straight back.

It looked a straightforward afternoon for the 31-year-old Spaniard when he clinched the first three games but Dimitrov worked his way back with a quick break to make it 3-3.

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The 16-time Grand Slam champion wrapped up the set with a whipped forehand onto the line. "Little bit sore still".

But the former world number four, now ranked 36, did enough to wear down a exhausted Zverev who came through a late-night thriller with Richard Gasquet on his 21st birthday on Friday.

If his form in Monte Carlo is anything to go by, Rafael Nadal will once again be a serious force to be reckoned with at Roland Garros next month. He beat Nadal in their last encounter two years ago to take the bronze medal at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

"I'm sorry for him, because he's a good friend. But, you know, to see him this week, it looks a little bit hard", added Nishikori.

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