Rafael Nadal made it 1,001 ATP Tour wins on Thursday after the Spaniard beat Jordan Thompson to make it through to the quarter-finals of the Rolex Paris Masters.
A day after becoming the fourth player in the Open Era to record 1,000 tour-level wins, Nadal resumed his pursuit of a maiden Paris-Bercy title.
The world No 2 saw off a spirited second set fightback by the Australian to claim a 6-1 7-6 (7-3) victory.
Nadal said: “Positive thing, I think I only faced one break-point with my serve during the whole match but it was a set point, and a tough one. So that’s a positive thing with my serve.
“I found a way. In the tie-break I saved a couple of breakpoints. Second point of the tie-break had huge importance, too.
“So, yeah, quarter-finals, that’s the most important thing for me. I’m happy.”
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Nadal will take on his compatriot Pablo Carreno Busta on Friday after the ninth seed defeated Slovak Norbert Gombos 7-5 6-2.
“It’s normal that in quarter-finals I face a very tough opponent like him,” said Nadal. “We are in a Masters 1000, the best players are here. So I can’t expect another thing, no?
“I need to be ready to play my best against an opponent that I know he’s playing well and with confidence. I hope to be ready to play my game because that’s what I’m gonna need.”
He added: “I think I am not doing a lot of things bad. I just didn’t play indoors for a year almost, and is part of the process of course. I need to keep going. I think these kind of matches helps. Yesterday’s match, today’s, tomorrow another opportunity.”
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Diego Schwartzman is one win away from claiming the final singles spot at the O2 Arena in London.
The Argentinian defeated Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 6-1 6-1 to reach the quarter-finals in Paris and can only be denied if Spain’s Carreno Busta wins the title.
He will next face Russia’s Daniil Medvedev, who came back from a set down to beat Australia’s Alex de Minaur 5-7 6-2 6-2 in just under two hours.
“I watched his match and Diego played really well,” Medvedev said of Schwartzman, who has finished runner-up at three ATP tournaments this season.
“I think he made five unforced errors and was returning a lot of balls in the court. He served pretty well and it will be a really tough match, because he has been on fire this year.”
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