Nadal sets up all Spanish tie in US Open

Rafael Nadal will not be the sole focus of Spanish eyes for once, but the world number one is more than happy to share the spotlight at the US Open.

Nadal beat France's Gilles Simon 6-4 6-4 6-2 in the third round at Flushing Meadows to ensure at least one Spanish player will be in the semi-finals in New York.

That is because the top seed will face compatriot Feliciano Lopez in the fourth round, with the winner of that match taking on either David Ferrer or Fernando Verdasco in the quarter-finals.

"That is positive news for us, very positive, because I think with the ball and the court here it is probably the most difficult tournament for us," Nadal said. "I congratulate my friends. Best of luck for everybody."

As for his own form, which has seen him win all three matches in straight sets, Nadal added: "I think I am playing better, a little bit better, every day.

"Today was a solid match, I think. The serve is still good, so that's a very important thing. From the baseline I think my movements and my shots start to improve to be better every day."

A record nine Spanish players had reached the third round, with six now through to the fourth after wins for Nadal, Lopez, Ferrer, Verdasco and Tommy Robredo on Sunday, while Albert Montanes won on Saturday.

Ferrer advanced to the last 16 at Flushing Meadows for just the second time in his career with a comfortable 7-6 (7/2) 6-2 6-2 win over yet another Spaniard, Daniel Gimeno-Traver.

The last time Ferrer reached the fourth round in New York was in 2007, when he beat Nadal on his way to the semi-finals, which remains his best result in a Grand Slam.

Lopez was leading 6-3 4-0 against Sergiy Stakhovsky when the Ukrainian was forced to retire hurt from their third-round clash, while Robredo also benefited from a retirement, the Spaniard leading two sets to one and 2-1 in the fourth when France's Michael Llodra retired through injury.

Robredo will face Russian 12th seed Mikhail Youzhny in the fourth round, after he eliminated American 18th seed John Isner 6-4 6-7 7-6 6-4 in the evening session.

The only disappointment for Spain came when 14th seed Nicolas Almagro lost in straight sets to American Sam Querrey, who will face Switzerland's Stanislas Wawrinka in the last 16.

Wawrinka knocked out fourth seed Andy Murray in four sets in a match featuring 13 breaks of serve and almost as many breaks in play for medical treatment to both players.

"I think at the end of the first set I was playing a little bit too defensive," Wawrinka said.

"That's what I started to change in the second and third and fourth sets, to stay aggressive, even if he's coming, even if he's putting a lot of pressure.

"But I have the feeling he was a little bit injured, he was not feeling okay, so I was trying to stay aggressive and to make him run a lot, and I think I did pretty well."

Arts and Entertainment
Billie Piper as Brona in Penny Dreadful
tvReview: It’s business as usual in Victorian London. Let’s hope that changes as we get further into the new series spoiler alert
Life and Style
A nurse tends to a recovering patient on a general ward at The Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham
Arts and Entertainment
No Offence
tvReview: No Offence has characters who are larger than life and yet somehow completely true to life at the same time spoiler alert
Chuck Norris pictured in 1996
Arts and Entertainment
Sarah Lucas, I SCREAM DADDIO, Installation View, British Pavilion 2015
artWhy Sarah Lucas is the perfect choice to represent British art at the Venice Biennale
A voter placing a ballot paper in the box at a polling station
Arts and Entertainment
The Queen (Kristin Scott Thomas) in The Audience
theatreReview: Stephen Daldry's direction is crisp in perfectly-timed revival
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

General Election 2015: Ed Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

He was meant to be Labour's biggest handicap - but has become almost an asset
General Election 2015: A guide to the smaller parties, from the the National Health Action Party to the Church of the Militant Elvis Party

On the margins

From Militant Elvis to Women's Equality: a guide to the underdogs standing in the election
Amr Darrag: Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister in exile still believes Egypt's military regime can be replaced with 'moderate' Islamic rule

'This is the battle of young Egypt for the future of our country'

Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister Amr Darrag still believes the opposition can rid Egypt of its military regime and replace it with 'moderate' Islamic rule, he tells Robert Fisk
Why patients must rely less on doctors: Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'

Why patients must rely less on doctors

Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'
Sarah Lucas is the perfect artist to represent Britain at the Venice Biennale

Flesh in Venice

Sarah Lucas has filled the British pavilion at the Venice Biennale with slinky cats and casts of her female friends' private parts. It makes you proud to be a woman, says Karen Wright
11 best anti-ageing day creams

11 best anti-ageing day creams

Slow down the ageing process with one of these high-performance, hardworking anti-agers
Juventus 2 Real Madrid 1: Five things we learnt, including Iker Casillas is past it and Carlos Tevez remains effective

Juventus vs Real Madrid

Five things we learnt from the Italian's Champions League first leg win over the Spanish giants
Ashes 2015: Test series looks a lost cause for England... whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket

Ashes series looks a lost cause for England...

Whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket, says Stephen Brenkley
Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power