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

Posted May 11, 2018

Rafael Nadal stretched his winning run on clay to a record 50 consecutive sets to reach the Madrid Open quarter-finals at the expense of Diego Schwartzman.

World No.1 Rafael Nadal has set a new record of winning 50 consecutive sets on a single surface by beating Argentine Diego Schwartzman 6-3 6-4 to reach the Madrid Open quarter-finals.

The last time Nadal had dropped a set on clay was previous year in Madrid when playing in the round of 32 against Fabio Fognini.

The win earns Nadal a date with the talented fifth seed Dominic Thiem, who came back from a set down to defeat Borna Coric 2-6, 7-6 (5), 6-4.

In the men's draw, Juan Martin del Porto led 4-0 in a third-set tie-break but still lost to Serbian qualifier Dusan Lajovic.

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

"I really don't think much about that", said Nadal of the record afterwards. "I won a hard match against a very hard player that played well".

British number one, Kyle Edmund, beat number eight seed David Goffin 6-3, 6-3 to move into the quarterfinals.

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The 23-year-old broke his Belgian opponent's serve twice in the opening set and once in the second, to seal a 6-3, 6-3 victory in an hour and 12 minutes.

In the quarter-finals, Lajovic will meet South Africa's Kevin Anderson who overcame German Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-3, 7-6 (9-7).

No 2 seed Alexander Zverev has largely flowed under the radar and looked comfortable against Leonardo Mayer, and he will face John Isner once more in a Masters, having been edged for the Miami title by the big-serving American. "I'm just feeling week very good on the court, and everything is working so far".

The women's defending champions and top seed, Simona Halep brushed past qualifier Krystina Pliskova 6-1, 6-4 in just 75 minutes, but the second seed Caroline Wozniacki surprisingly lost 6-2, 6-2 to Kiki Bertens, who is now ranked 21st in the world.

"I missed in some important moments", Halep said.

Kiki Bertens came from behind to beat Sharapova 4-6, 6-2, 6-3.

Halep lost to Karolina Pliskova 6-4, 6-3, ending her bid to become a three-time consecutive champion in Madrid.

"It was great to get those wins against those players", said Sharapova, the 2014 champion in Madrid.