Nadal too strong for Matosevic
Rafael Nadal has defeated Aussie Marinko Matosevic in straight sets to set up a semifinal clash with Novak Djokovic in Montreal.
Rafael Nadal defeated Australian Marinko Matosevic 6-2 6-4 on Friday to set up a ATP Montreal Masters semi-final with Novak Djokovic.
Djokovic and Nadal delivered crushing defeats on Friday to set up their 36th career clash.
With Djokovic hammering France’s Richard Gasquet 6-1 6-2 as the top seed motored into final four.
Nadal leads his Serbian rival 20-15 in their career series, and won their last meeting in an epic five-set battle in the semifinals of Roland Garros in June.
Milos Raonic and wildcard Vasek Pospisil set up an all-Canadian semi at the bottom of the draw.
Pospisil, living the dream week of his career, had it easy in his quarter-final as Russian opponent Nikolay Davydenko retired with a respiratory ailment while trailing 3-0. Raonic, overcame Latvia’s Ernests Gulbis 7-6 4-6 6-4.
Pospisil had reached the quarter-finals with his first top-10 victory, a third-round defeat of Tomas Berdych.
Djokovic, a three-time champion in Canada who is bidding for his third-straight title at the event, won his eighth match out of nine against Gasquet and his sixth in a row in the series.
“Everything was working in my game,” he said.
“It was close to the perfection. In every part of my game I did almost my best.
“From the start I tried to dictate the play on the court and be in control of the rallies. I’ve done really well. The serve was very efficient, very high percentage of first serves, a lot of aces, a lot of free points.
“That’s something that obviously gives you confidence when you’re playing at this level.”
Nadal, leading the ATP on seven titles this season, spent an hour and a quarter in dispatching Matosevic. He said that after a seven-week pause following an early Wimbledon loss that his problem left knee feels fine.
“I’m happy with the way that it feels and also with having a chance to play after such a long pause. To be in a semi-final on fast hardcourt now is amazing for me. I’m enjoying every moment.
“I need to try my best and play my best tennis if I’m to have a chance against Novak. The court is fast and that will favour him, but I’m glad to be in the semi-finals.”
Raonic ran his record over Gulbis, conqueror of Wimbledon champion Andy Murray 24 hours earlier, to 4-0.
Pospisil is trying to keep a grip on his emotions.
“This is a huge week for me (ranking) points-wise. Top 50 was a life-long goal of mine, the goal that I set at the beginning of this year. Now I’m there already.
“So my goals are already changing. I’ll try to reset them a little bit and try to keep moving up.”
World number 13 Raonic has come out of a trough this week after failing to get past the third round during the past three months.
“It’s great in what it represents for Canadian tennis,” said Raonic. “It’s great what it shows to little kids: that you can succeed as a Canadian in tennis.
“But for what I want to achieve, what I’ve got to do to prepare myself as best as possible for tomorrow, it doesn’t change anything.”
Headline: TEN:Nadal too good for Matosevic in Montreal