Nadal starts well on grass
Halle - French Open champion Rafael Nadal made a winning return to grass courts on Thursday, defeating Slovakia's Lukas Lacko 7-5, 6-1 in the second round of the Halle ATP tournament.
The Spanish world No 2, playing at the German venue for the first time since 2005, will tackle German eighth seed Philipp Kohlschreiber in the quarter-finals.
Kohlschreiber, the defending champion, made the last eight with a 6-7 (5/7), 6-1, 6-3 win over Poland's Lukasz Kubot.
Nadal, who captured a record seventh Roland Garros title on Monday, has won all his eight career meetings with the German.
"In the second set, I served better, the forehand had more control, I played more aggressive. I'm happy to be through," said Nadal.
"I haven't played here for a long time. As I said, every hour I spend on the court works for me on the grass because I haven't had a lot of time to adapt. Tomorrow is a big challenge because Philipp is the defending champion.
"He's a very complete player. He does everything well."
Top-seeded Nadal last played this tournament seven years ago, fresh from his first French Open title but suffered a rude awakening on his debut on grass, losing in the first round to Alexander Waske.
Nadal took just 75 minutes to complete his fourth win against Lacko, who is one of the few players on tour to have won a set to love against the Spaniard, achieving the feat in Doha earlier this year.