World number five, Rafael Nadal has set up a quarter final clash against Andy Murray after defeating fellow Spaniard, Joao Sousa.
The Spaniard earned a 6-0 4-6 6-3 victory against Sousa in the quarter-finals in his home country on Friday.World No 35 Sousa was initially no match for the clay-court specialist, who whitewashed the first set within the blink of an eye. Sousa finally got on the scoreboard by holding his first four service games of the second set, before completing a shock break.Sousa valiantly fought deep into the third but Nadal broke to go 5-3 ahead before sealing progression and a meeting with Murray.
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In the other encounter, Andy Murray defeated Thomas Berdych to set up a quarter final clash with Rafael Nadal.The British No 1 is the reigning champion of the Spanish event and has moved one step closer to retaining his title after a 6-3 6-2 win in the quarter-finals.The encounter on Madrid’s clay courts lacked the spikiness of previous meetings between the players, but the Brit would have appreciated a calmer day’s work.Murray broke at the third time of asking in the second set before easing into a 4-2 lead, grinding Berdych’s challenge to a halt.Murray secured back-to-back breaks with a sensational backhand drop shot that sent Berdych scurrying unsuccessfully across the red clay, before serving out the win.