Nadal vs Verdasco : Rafael Nadal might have arrived in Rome without a title on the season for the first time since 2004. But if the World No. 2 needed it, he did a lot to gain confidence on Thursday. Nadal lost just two games in two matches, defeating No. 14 seed Nikoloz Basilashvili 6-1, 6-0 to reach the quarter-finals of the Internazionali BNL d’Italia
Nadal vs Verdasco
Date : Friday, May 17, 2019
Start Time : 8:35 AM ET
The eight-time champion is into the last eight at this ATP Masters 1000 tournament for the 14th time and his 11th consecutive appearance. Before Thursday, he had lost just one game in a match at the Foro Italico only twice in 62 matches. But he did it twice in the same day, beating Frenchman Jeremy Chardy 6-0, 6-1 earlier on.
“Playing two matches is a very dangerous day. I was able to manage it well,” Nadal said. “I played well, especially I think better in the afternoon than the morning. Yeah, [I’m] happy about that level in the afternoon.”
Rafael Nadal takes on Verdasco in the quarter-finals of the Italian Open later today.
Nadal came through won two matches on Thursday – against Nikoloz Basilashvili and Jeremy Chardy, dropping just two games in the process.
The Spaniard noted that it was risky having to play twice in one day but that he was able to keep physical exertion to a minimum.
“Playing two matches is a very dangerous day. I was able to manage it well,” Nadal said.
NADAL VS VERDASCO LIVE STREAM FREE TENNIS ONLINE
Fernando Verdasco stole the show on Thursday as he battled past players like Dominic Thiem and Karen Khachanov to set up a quarter-final clash against fellow Spaniard Rafael Nadal on Friday.
Verdasco delivered the upset of the tournament when he defeated the in-form Dominic Thiem 4-6, 6-4, 7-5 in a display of sustained power and precision.
The going did not get any easier for Verdasco as he had to then square off against Khachanov. However, the Spaniard once again showed grit and determination to pull off a stunning victory.
On the other hand, Rafael Nadal breezed past both of his opponents, defeating both Jeremy Chardy and Nikoloz Basilashvili in straight sets. Nadal showcased true clay court dominance and will now be pumped up for his quarter-final match against his compatriot.
Nadal and Verdasco have met 19 times in the past, with the former leading their head to head 16-3. However, tonight’s clash will be their first meeting in over two years. The last time they crossed paths was in the second round of Indian Wells in 2017, a match which Nadal won 6-3, 7-5.
Both players will know each other’s weaknesses and will look to exploit them to the best of their abilities. Nadal will obviously have the edge physically, having spent a lot less time on court.
If Verdasco is to have any chance of pulling off an upset, his forehand needs to fire on all cylinders. That’s the only weapon that can truly trouble Nadal.
However, Nadal is eyeing his first clay-court title of the season and seems to be in top form. He has blown away all of his opponents thus far and it’s very unlikely that he drops a set, much less loses the match to Verdasco.