(CNN) -- Top seed Novak Djokovic and second seed Rafael Nadal remain on course to meet in Sunday's final of the Monte Carlo Masters after both won their quarterfinal matches on Friday.
Top seed Djokovic, who lost to Nadal in last year's final, was in impressive form as he cruised past Argentine David Nalbandian 6-2 6-3 -- and he will now face either sixth seed Fernando Verdasco or Albert Montanes in the semifinals.
Meanwhile, Nadal, bidding for an astonishing sixth successive victory in the principality, was made to work harder to defeat fellow-Spaniard Juan Carlos Ferrero 6-4 6-2 in a match that was held up for 30 minutes because of rain and high winds.
"To be in semifinals is a very good start of the clay season," Nadal told the official ATP Tour Web site.
"The result, against probably one of the tougher opponents right now on clay, is very good one.
"I think when the weather was reasonably good, I played well. I had good control of the ball. When I attacked with the forehand, I did well. My serve was much better today than the rest of the three days," he added.
Nadal, who beat Djokovic 6-3 2-6 6-1 in a thirlling final last year, will now face another Spaniard, David Ferrer, in the last four.
Ferrer, seeded 11, squeezed past Andy Murray's conqueror Philipp Kohlschreiber 7-5 7-6.