Rafael Nadal sets up semi-final clash with Novak Djokovic in Madrid

Report Andre Agassi

Off the back of triumphs in Monte Carlo and Barcelona, the clay-court specialist's French Open preparations are gathering pace, with Goffin defeated 7-6 (7-3) 6-2 on Friday.

Kei Nishikori of Japan talks to the media after withdraw from the Madrid Open with an injury before his quarterfinal against Novak Djokovic.

A semi-final berth, in which he is expected to face in-form Rafael Nadal, in his first tournament after parting ways with his coaching team will give him the much-needed boost ahead of Rome and Roland Garros, which he won previous year.

Fourth seed Nadal won 6-3 6-1 in 72 minutes in a match which showed promise early but quickly became a procession.

The Swiss also spoke about the career resurgences of Nadal and Federer, stating that he does not see any of the "Fab Four" dropping in the world rankings anytime soon.

Lopez believes if Djokovic can string some wins together, he will regain his confidence and form. Immediately he made the quarters in Toronto and semis in Cincinnati. It was a cruising win for Nadal.

After his second match in Madrid, he said his biggest evolution over the past two years was his perspective.

The 30-year-old has already lifted titles on the surface in Monte-Carlo and Barcelona and while cracks have appeared in his game in matches against Fognini and Kyle Edmund, when it comes to stiffer tests, he's been at his ruthless best.

The 59th-ranked Coric became the first lucky loser to reach the quarterfinals in Madrid. "But it's something that is getting better day after day".

Novak Djokovic staved off a huge upset in his first match since splitting with his long-time coaching team to beat Nicolas Almagro 6-1, 4-6, 7-5 in the second round of the Madrid Masters on Wednesday.

To his credit, Lopez rallied and constructed a break point opening in Djokovic's first service game of the second set.

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And only a poor return on his break point opportunities denied Nadal just as convincing a scoreline as the Spaniard took only two of his 13 chances.

Organizers said Monday that Nadal will play his opening match on Wednesday because of the ailment that has been bothering him since Friday.

Dimitrov will have to wait a little longer to try to regain that status, and perhaps that will come on his favoured grass, where he made headlines nearly a decade back by winning the junior Wimbledon title. He's one of the most hard players you can play.

Raonic will play Belgium's David Goffin next.

Djokovic could meet Nadal in the semi-finals.

Almagro beat fellow Spaniard Tommy Robredo in 6-3 3-6 6-1 in the first round of the tournament.

"It was always going to be tough".

"It's been feeling good, better than I expected", Nishikori told the media in Madrid.

Nick Kyrgios plays a forehand back to Rafael Nadal. I won a couple rounds and lost to Rafa.

"I think I have been playing well, not just on beaten clay, but all year". But he played well tonight.

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