Madrid Open: Nadal Breaks Mcenroe's 34-Year-Old Set Record

Madrid Open: Nadal Breaks Mcenroe's 34-Year-Old Set Record

Nadal extended his winning streak to 50 consecutive sets on clay, eclipsing the mark McEnroe established on carpet in 1984.

Nadal was out of sorts from the start, looking nervous, committing errors, and landing his groundstrokes in the middle of the service box.

The world No. 1's focus is trained on his next match against Dominic Thiem, a rematch of last year's final. In their match today, the third round of Madrid Open, Nadal lost the first set initially 7-5, despite saving a couple of set points before. The ball flies more here...

"I think I placed myself in a good position". I think I really hurt him with them.

"A player like Dominic has a lot of potential".

The southpaw Shapovalov is a very hard player to read and Edmund struggled at times to pick his direction, not helped by his serve not quite reaching the level of earlier in the week.

Only Novak Djokovic, Gaston Gaudio, and now Thiem have beaten Nadal at least three times on the slow stuff.

But Thiem was not to be denied and won 10 of the next 11 points to snuff out any chance of a Nadal comeback, sealing victory with a powerful cross-court victor in under two hours.

Further evidence that this was to be Thiem's day came as he fought back from 15-40 down in the next game to hold thanks to a magnificent drop-volley and an unreturnable serve, only to then allow Nadal to level at 3-3 with an errant forehand.

"I'm not taking anything away from him". He's in a really great form. I didn't play badly in my opinion.

"Obviously two weeks ago in Monte-Carlo, he killed me Love and 2". Like this I should go in every match against him.

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On the men's side, second-seeded Alexander Zverev brushed aside Denis Shapovalov 6-4, 6-1 to reach the final.

Nadal will lose his world No. 1 ranking to Roger Federer because of the defeat.

"You can not be number one when you've been not playing for five months", he said.

"It gave me a huge boost of confidence", he said.

Anderson said: "I've said for many years, I've really enjoyed playing on the clay".

The 19-year-old Shapovalov, who lost to Zverev in the Montreal Masters semifinals last year, is assured of breaking the world top 30 as a result of his efforts in Madrid.

Pliskova is now the highest seeded player left in the women's tournament after both No. 2 Caroline Wozniacki and third-seeded Garbine Muguruza lost Wednesday.

"Five months without playing in a tournament means that I can not be No 1". I'm not even thinking about that.

"Of course I'm upset", Nadal admitted. After that, things we can not see in the future. I am No. 3 in the race of the year, which is the most important thing.

The fifth-seeded Thiem arrived at the semifinals after dealing top-ranked Rafael Nadal his first loss on clay in a year. "This is the reality".

Nadal became the double champion of tennis - the Spaniard belongs to the longest winning streak on a particular surface. I'm not sure if it was the long wait for the match or just a tough week.

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