Published: Fri, May 11, 2018
Sports | By Angie Alvarado

Sports Digest: Nadal wins 50th straight set on clay to set record

Sports Digest: Nadal wins 50th straight set on clay to set record

Schwartzman had to play against the break points in the very first game of the match, fending off the first with a service victor and the second when Nadal netted a forehand to avoid an early setback.

On any other day, the win would not attrack much attention but by winning in straight sets, Nadal extended his winning streak on clay to a staggering 50 sets to go past John McEnroe's record of 49 consecutive sets won on carpet going back to 1984. "Well, it's done. It's over".

But while the world number one cruised to a 6-3, 6-4 victory over Diego Schwartzman, Juan Martin del Potro, Maria Sharapova and Simona Halep all crashed out.

"Let's not talk about that any more and let's focus on what we have ahead".

Sharapova also lost in three sets to Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands while Halep, the champion in 2016 and 2017, was blown away by Karolina Pliskova.

Russian former world No.1 Sharapova has shown only flashes of the play that has earned her five grand slam titles since returning from a doping ban past year. After playing what was arguably the best point of the tournament at 3-1, 30-0 in the first set, Monfils seemed more pleased than Nadal-and Monfils lost the point.

Kyle Edmund continued his excellent run by ousting eighth-seeded David Goffin 6-4, 6-4.

Edmund will next face Canadian teenager Denis Shapovalov, who achieved a 6-4 6-4 win over compatriot Milos Raonic.

Pliskova gave the Romanian no chance, breaking her serve four times and hitting 20 winners.

Nadal must have forgotten what it feels like to go to the distance, though, and a double fault from Schwartzman put the Mallorca native back in front and he was jumping for joy after serving out the match to make history.

"There are obvious things that are not working well for me, But I have to keep working on them and pray that.and hope that my game will get stronger." the 12-time Grand Slam winning Serbian said.

Halep, who has won the tournament for the last two years, had looked imperious on her way to the last eight, dropping only nine games in three matches including Wednesday's win against Pliskova's twin sister Kristyna. He will play German Alexander Zverev, who beat Argentine Leonardo Mayer 6-4 6-2. She will play seventh-seeded Caroline Garcia after she dispatched with Carla Suarez Navarro 6-2, 6-3.

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