Rafael Nadal produced vintage form against an out-of-sorts Roger Federer to crush the Swiss 6-4, 6-2 in their heavily anticipated quarterfinal at the ATP Masters / WTA BNP Paribas Open on Thursday.
The Spanish left-hander, competing in his first hardcourt event since returning from seven months on the sidelines with a knee injury, moved around the court well and outplayed his long-time rival at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden.
Nadal broke the defending champion once in the first set and three times in the second to wrap up victory in one hour 24 minutes in front of a packed house at the Stadium Court.
The Spanish world No. 5 improved his record against Federer to 19-10 and will next face sixth-seeded Czech Tomas Berdych, who beat South African Kevin Anderson 6-4, 6-4 earlier in the day.
Earlier, Berdych, who has not dropped a set in his first four matches here, broke Anderson in the final game of both sets to seal his win in 90 minutes on a sizzling afternoon.
The results: Men: Quarterfinals: Tomas Berdych bt Kevin Anderson 6-4, 6-4; Rafael Nadal bt Roger Federer 6-4, 6-2.
Women: Quarterfinals: Angelique Kerber w/o Samantha Stosur; Caroline Wozniacki w/o Victoria Azarenka.