Madrid - Fourteen-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal extended his perfect start to the European clay-court season to 12 matches with a 6-4, 6-2 win over Sam Querrey to reach the Madrid Masters quarter-finals on Thursday.
Nadal started slowly as Querrey stormed into a 3-0 lead and had a break point to lead 5-2.
However, Nadal turned the match around by winning six straight games to seal the first set and break early in the second.
Querrey broke back to level at 2-2, but Nadal pulled away in the final stages to remain on course for a fifth title in Madrid.
"I had the confidence that if I managed to make the rallies longer, more than three balls, I knew that things could turn around," said Nadal.
"Luckily that's what happened. I saved that important point when we were at 4-2. Then from 4-2 I managed to break him and from there on things went more or less perfectly."
Nadal next meets Portugal's Joao Sousa who overcame Jack Sock 6-1, 6-7 (3/7), 6-2.