Rafael Nadal beat Juan Carlos Ferrero 6-4, 6-2 in the quarterfinals of the Monte Carlo Masters on Friday to extend his winning run at the tournament to 30 matches and stay on course for his sixth straight title.
The second-seeded Nadal had dropped only two games in his previous two matches, but this time the ninth-seeded Ferrero — the Monte Carlo Masters champion in 2002 and 2003 — did at least provide some testing moments for Nadal.
Ferrero played the shot of the match with a splendid backhand winner down the line which completely wrong-footed even the agile Nadal as he fought to stay in a keenly contested all-Spanish match between former French Open champions.
Ferrero saved two match points before Nadal closed out the contest with a strong serve that Ferrero could only return into the net.
Nadal next meets David Ferrer in another all-Spanish match, having beaten Ferrer recently at the Sony Ericsson Open in straight sets.
Nadal leads Ferrer 9-3 since Ferrer won their first ever meeting, on clay, six years ago in Stuttgart, Germany.
Ferrer earlier beat Philipp Kohlschreiber 7-5, 7-6 (1).
The 11th seeded Ferrer served for Friday’s match at 5-4, but Kohlschreiber broke back to even the set at 5-5. Ferrer dominated the tiebreaker and won on his first match point when Kohlschreiber’s backhand was out.