After an unexpected day of rest (all tennis matches were canceled Wednesday), Spain’s World No. 5 Rafael Nadal continued his singles hot streak by defeating France’s Simon Gilles on Thursday morning. He also exceled in excelled in doubles, winning his semifinal match alongside Spanish partner Marc Lopez.
Nadal was a little slower out of the gate in this third round singles match, with Gilles gaining an early lead. The two played catch-up with one another until they reached a first set tiebreak. The Spaniard managed to clinch the tiebreak and the set, 7(7)-6(5).
That afternoon, Nadal and countryman Lopez took on the Canadian team of Nestor/Pospisil. It took them two tiebreaks, but the Spaniards won 7(7)-6(1), 7(7)-6(4).
Throughout the singles match, the World No. 5 utilized smart tactics and his typically aggressive style. But especially during the first set, he looked tired. After advancing to the final of the men's doubles competition, Nadal withdrew from mixed doubles (which would have seen him in a hotly-anticipated partnership with Garbina Muguruza). He's clearly trying to find a balance between playing as much tennis as possible without suffering diminshing returns.
The 14-time Grand Slam winner has now booked a singles quarterfinal match-up against Brazil’s unseeded Thomaz Bellucci, scheduled for Friday on Centre Court at approximately noon ET. Nadal and Lopez will also compete in the men's doubles final on Friday, playing the Romanian team of Mergea/Tecau.