Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray Advance to Next Round Of Madrid Masters
In other matches, Juan Martin del Potro beat 14th-seeded Dominic Thiem 7-6 (5), 6-3.
Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray made their way into the third round of the Madrid Masters by beating their respective opponents. While Nadal easily defeated Andrey Kuznetsov 6-3, 6-3, Murray had to fight hard against 37-year-old Radek Stepanek for a 7-6, 3-6, 6-1 win.
Nadal broke Kuznetsov’s serve once in the first set and twice in the second to secure the win in his opening match at the clay-court tournament that he has won twice in the last three seasons.
The Spaniard had four aces and no double faults against the 39th-ranked Russian as he went on to win his 11th consecutive match this year in 1 hour, 18 minutes. He will next face either American Sam Querrey or Frenchman Lucas Pouille, who play their match on Wednesday.
Nadal hasn’t lost since his opening match at the Miami Open in March. The former No. 1 is coming off consecutive titles at the Monte Carlo Masters and Barcelona Open.
The second-ranked Murray on the other hand to battle hard to get past former No. 8 Stepanek, who on Monday became the oldest player to win a match at a Masters 1000 tournament since Jimmy Connors in 1992.
Murray was broken early in both sets, but came back strongly in the third to close out the match and secure a spot in the next round. He had 11 aces overall, including four in the decisive set.
In other matches on Tuesday, former No. 4 in the world Juan Martin del Potro - currently ranked 274th after a series on injuries, beat 14th-seeded Dominic Thiem 7-6 (5), 6-3.
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