Nadal sets up Federer French Open showdown

31st May 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, May 31 (AFP) - Spanish fourth seed Rafael Nadal set up a potentially classic French Open semi-final showdown against top seed Roger Federer on Tuesday when he beat compatriot David Ferrer 7-5, 6-2, 6-0 in his last eight clash.

PARIS, May 31 (AFP) - Spanish fourth seed Rafael Nadal set up a potentially classic French Open semi-final showdown against top seed Roger Federer on Tuesday when he beat compatriot David Ferrer 7-5, 6-2, 6-0 in his last eight clash.

The Spanish 18-year-old, bidding to become the first man since Mats Wilander in 1982 to win the French Open on his debut, overcame a battling first set performance from the 20th seed to move into his first career Grand Slam semi-final.

Ferrer, who came back from 0-4 in the final set to knock out defending champion Gaston Gaudio in the fourth round, matched Nadal shot-for-shot in a gruelling 56-minute first set.

He even had set point in the tenth game, but after falling two breaks down to slip 1-4 behind in the second set, he needed treatment on his injured back and thereafter won just one more game.

Nadal had broken to lead 4-3 in the first set before Ferrer, who had lost twice to the Spaniard already in 2005, hit back to level at 4-4.

The teenager then hit probably the shot of the tournament to set up break point in the 11th game when he sprinted across court to chase down a deep Ferrer drive to smash back a vicious forehand winner.

After receiving medical attention, 23-year-old Ferrer was a shadow of the player who had competed so well in the first set.

Nadal opened up a two-set lead after 1hr 45min and then quickly broke to go 1-0 in front in the third set and then held for 2-0 with a confident lob.

He then broke again in the third and fifth games as Ferrer laboured around the court and it was all over after just 2hr 08min.

 © AFP


Subject: French News

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