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Nadal edges past Dimitrov as Tsonga awaits


 

Originally published on: 19/04/13 00:00

The eight-time defending champion had only previously lost six sets at the Masters 1000 event since he first won the title back in 2005, but he was given a run for his money by the highly-rated Bulgarian before clinching a 6-2 2-6 6-4 victory.

"I know that when you have these tough matches, it is decisive to keep fighting," Nadal said. "If you keep fighting, you will lose some ones, but you will have a chance to win a lot of ones, too.”_ь_ь

Nadal took advantage of an untimely bout of cramp for Dimitrov, and broke the 21-year-old for a 5-4 lead in the decider before sealing the win with an ace.

"It's a tough loss," said Dimitrov, who is set to climb to No.27 in the ATP rankings . "Of course, I think I gave everything I had today. I must say, all the credit to him. He's an extraordinary player, extraordinary fighter. Today he obviously showed why he's the best not only on that surface, I believe, but he's one of the best out there.” _ь_ь

Nadal, who has won three titles since his return to action in February, will face Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the last four after the Frenchman rallied from a set down to beat Stanislas Wawrinka 2-6 6-3 6-4.

Italian Fabio Fognini continued his impressive run at the Monte Carlo Country Club as he ousted Richard Gasquet in straight sets.

With a 7-6(0) 6-2 win over the world No.9, Fognini, who upset Tomas Berdych in the third round, reached his first Masters 1000 semi-final. He will face top seed Novak Djokovic who beat Finland’s Jarkko Nieminen 6-4 6-3.

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