Nadal tested in 3-hour win over Cachin in Madrid and Swiatek reaches women’s quarters


MADRID (AP) — Rafael Nadal’s body withstood its toughest test yet at the Madrid Open as he needed three sets and more than three hours to get past 91st-ranked Pedro Cachin on Monday.

Nadal didn’t show any signs of physical limitations as he won 6-1, 6-7 (5), 6-3 to make it to the round of 16 at the clay-court tournament where he is the record five-time champion. He will next face 31st-ranked Jiri Lehecka.

“I took more risks in the third set, but it’s hard after so many months without competing,” Nadal said. “I hadn’t played a match like this in a long time. Let’s see how it goes tomorrow. I don’t know how I’m going to wake up. But I’m already happy for having won three matches in a row.”

The 37-year-old Nadal is trying to get in shape for next month’s French Open. Since his latest injury layoff, he’s had two matches in Barcelona and was pessimistic about his physical condition after arriving in Madrid. But he’s won three more times in the capital.

Nadal again looked comfortable early on against Cachin. The Argentine fought back in the second set but was broken twice while serving for the set. Cachin eventually prevailed in the tiebreaker.

Nadal didn’t look as loose in the final set, but did look tired. He wasn’t as consistent with his shots but picked up three breaks to seal the victory to the delight of the local crowd in the Caja Magica.

Earlier, Daniil Medvedev came from behind to defeat Sebastian Korda 5-7, 7-6 (4), 6-3. The third-seeded Russian was two points from defeat.

Felix Auger-Aliassime advanced after Jakub Mensik retired with an elbow injury. Auger-Aliassime was winning 6-1, 1-0.


Top-ranked Iga Swiatek remained on track for a first Madrid title by dispatching Sara Sorribes Tormo 6-1, 6-0.

Swiatek dropped just five points in the second set en route to the quarterfinals of the only major European clay tournament the Pole has yet to win.

The 27th-ranked Sorribes Tormo was the last Spanish woman still in the draw in Madrid.

Swiatek, who lost last year’s Madrid final to Aryna Sabalenka, will next face 11th-seeded Beatriz Haddad Maia, who defeated fifth-seeded Maria Sakkari 6-4, 6-4.

Eighth-seeded Ons Jabeur also eased past Jelena Ostapenko 6-0, 6-4, while Mirra Andreeva celebrated her 17th birthday with a 7-6 (2), 6-4 win over 12th-seeded Jasmine Paolini. The teen sensation from Russia came from 5-2 down in the first set to reach the quarterfinals, a round further than she managed in Madrid a year ago.

Andreeva will next face world No. 2 Sabalenka or 15th-ranked Danielle Collins.


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