Nadal cruises past Giraldo
Rafael Nadal (Gallo Images)
Barcelona - World number one Rafael Nadal cruised into the Barcelona Open quarterfinals with a 6-3 6-1 victory over unseeded Colombian Santiago Giraldo on Thursday.
The Spanish top seed, who won a seventh straight Monte Carlo Masters crown on his favoured clay surface on Sunday, is bidding for a sixth title in the Catalan capital in seven years.
He took his winning record on the red dust since 2005 to 183-6 to set up a clash with Frenchman Gael Monfils.
"Beating Giraldo 6-3 6-1 is good news because he can hit winners from anywhere on the court," the Wimbledon, French Open and U.S. Open champion said in an interview with Spanish TV.
Looking ahead to Friday's clash with seventh seed Monfils, who beat compatriot and ninth seed Richard Gasquet 6-4 7-6 earlier on Thursday, Nadal added:
"It's going to be a very tough match. Monfils is one of those players who can attack as well as defend and you never know how he is going to come out and play.
"He'll probably have to come out and attack but I'll try to dominate the points with my drives."
Fourth-seeded Spaniard David Ferrer, beaten by Nadal in the Monte Carlo final, eased through to the last eight with a 6-3 6-2 victory over Victor Hanescu of Romania.
Ferrer will next meet Austrian sixth-seeded Jurgen Melzer,whom he beat in Monte Carlo last week. Melzer had to come from a set down to get past 11th seed Albert Montanes, another Spaniard, 6-7 6-3 6-2.
Results from the Barcelona Open at Real Club de Tenis Barcelona (seedings in parentheses):
Gael Monfils (7), France, def. Richard Gasquet (9), France, 6-4, 7-6 (7).
David Ferrer (4), Spain, def. Victor Hanescu, Romania, 6-3, 6-2.
Rafael Nadal (1), Spain, def. Santiago Giraldo, Colombia, 6-3, 6-1.
Jurgen Melzer (6), Austria, def. Albert Montanes (11), Spain, 6-7 (2), 6-3, 6-2.
Nicolas Almagro (8), Spain, def. Nikolay Davydenko, Russia, 7-6 (2), 6-3.