Madrid - Rafael Nadal avoided becoming the latest big name to be dumped out of the Madrid Masters as he recovered from a set and a break down to beat compatriot David Ferrer 4-6, 7-6 (7/3), 6-0 to make the semi-finals.
Ferrer is currently ahead of the 11-time Grand Slam champion in the world rankings due to Nadal's seventh month layoff in the second-half of last season and despite a poor record against his compatriot he got off to the perfect start as he broke in the 10th game of the first set to take it 6-4.
In a topsy turvy second it was Nadal who took the early advantage, before Ferrer came roaring back and looked well-placed for a first win against Nadal on clay for nine years when he moved 4-2 in front.
However, Nadal broke straight back and then went onto edge the set on a tie-break 7/3.
And once he had restored parity, the world number five was unstoppable as Ferrer's belief disappeared and Nadal charged through the third set 6-0 to set up a semi-final meeting with either Kei Nishikori, the conqueror of Roger Federer, or Pablo Andujar.