Skip to main content

Nadal apologizes after thrashing friend in French Open rout

June 4, 2012 -- Updated 2051 GMT (0451 HKT)
Rafael Nadal, right, was apologetic after winning 17 games in a row in his straight-sets destruction of good friend Juan Monaco in the fourth round of the French Open. Rafael Nadal, right, was apologetic after winning 17 games in a row in his straight-sets destruction of good friend Juan Monaco in the fourth round of the French Open.
HIDE CAPTION
'Sorry, mate'
Spanish showdown
Murray on the move
Ferrer in form
Tsonga's challenge
Del Potro's date with destiny?
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Rafael Nadal reaches French Open quarterfinals after crushing his friend Juan Monaco
  • Second seed wins 17 games in a row to set up clash with compatriot Nicolas Almagro
  • World No. 4 Andy Murray comes from behind to beat French 17th seed Richard Gasquet
  • He will next face Spanish sixth seed David Ferrer, with the winner likely to meet Nadal

(CNN) -- World No. 2 Rafael Nadal remains on course for a semifinal showdown with Andy Murray at the French Open after both progressed into the last eight on Monday.

Nadal, seeking a record seventh title at Roland Garros, set up a clash with fellow Spaniard Nicolas Almagro after posting his fourth successive straight-sets victory of the clay-court event.

Having celebrated his 26th birthday on Sunday, Nadal demolished Argentine 13th seed Juan Monaco 6-2 6-0 6-0 to send a real message of intent to his main rivals.

He won 17 games in a row to take his overall record at the tournament to 49-1.

"In my opinion, he was unlucky in the first set. That's my feeling, 6-2 was too much. Later, for sure I was very happy the way I played. I feel very, very sorry for him," Nadal said.

Spirit, fitness and David Ferrer
Gilles Simon's endurance advantage

"I think he's playing probably the best tennis of his career, but probably not today, especially in the last set. I saw him suffering a little bit on court at the end. He's one of my best friends on tour."

Fourth seed Murray had to fight harder against home hope Richard Gasquet, coming from behind to set up an intriguing quarterfinal with in-form Spaniard David Ferrer.

"We've had some great matches, I've known him since I was a young kid, he is an unbelievable talent," said Murray, who leads their meetings 5-4 but has lost all three on clay.

"Every time I play against him I expect a very tough match. I'll have to play really well to win."

Sixth seed Ferrer crushed compatriot Marcel Granollers 6-3 6-2 6-0, while 12th seed Almagro defeated Serbia's world No. 8 Janko Tipsarevic 6-4 6-4 6-4.

"That win is one of the best moments of my career," said Almagro, who has lost twice to Nadal in French Open quarterfinals.

"He's the man on clay, and we are trying to be close to him. We are working hard to do our best. It's another match, and I'm ready to fight."

Michael Chang's historic French victory
Brian Baker's grand slam comeback

France will have one competitor in the last eight, as fifth seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga completed a 6-4 7-6 (8-6) 3-6 3-6 6-4 win over Swiss No. 18 Stanislas Wawrinka after the match was halted due to bad light on Sunday.

Tsonga, seeking to become the first French male to win the tournament since Yannick Noah in 1983, will play world No. 1 Novak Djokovic in his first quarterfinal appearance at Roland Garros.

The Serbian is seeking to become the first man since 1968 to hold all four grand slam titles, but has never made it to the final in Paris.

"It's going to be a very difficult match. But obviously I'll fight like a lion and we'll see the result," Tsonga said.

Argentine ninth seed Juan Martin del Potro also progressed after a delayed match, with the 2009 U.S. Open champion beating Czech No. 7 Tomas Berdych 7-6 (8-6) 1-6 6-3 7-5.

The 23-year-old will next face world No. 3 Roger Federer, who beat him in the 2009 French Open semis before winning the title for the first and only time to complete his collection of grand slam crowns.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
June 30, 2014 -- Updated 1135 GMT (1935 HKT)
When Agnieszka Radwanska refused to look her opponent in the eye after losing at Wimbledon, it raised more than eyebrows.
June 23, 2014 -- Updated 0114 GMT (0914 HKT)
It's 10 years since a teenage Maria Sharapova became the darling of Wimbledon's hallowed Center Court, launching herself as a star.
Rafael Nadal is still the "King of Clay" -- but his crown has slipped a bit, says CNN's Will Edmonds.
May 23, 2014 -- Updated 0746 GMT (1546 HKT)
He's regularly voted France's favorite famous person, but many of the nation's youth have "no idea" about his glorious sporting past
May 5, 2014 -- Updated 2359 GMT (0759 HKT)
British tennis player Elena Baltacha won 11 ITF Pro Circuit titles during her 16-year playing career.
The Ukrainian-born, British tennis star loses fight against liver cancer, just a few weeks after revealing that she was battling the disease.
April 29, 2014 -- Updated 1555 GMT (2355 HKT)
Five-time grand slam champion Martina Hingis has followed her mom into a coaching role, setting up a new tennis academy in Barcelona, Spain.
April 16, 2014 -- Updated 1238 GMT (2038 HKT)
Suisse's Belinda Bencic returns the ball to France's Alize Cornet during the second match of the Fed Cup first round tennis tie France vs Switzerland on February 8, 2014 at the Pierre de Coubertin stadium in Paris. AFP PHOTO / KENZO TRIBOUILLARD (Photo credit should read KENZO TRIBOUILLARD/AFP/Getty Images)
It's no easy matter becoming a world class tennis player. It's even harder when everyone (really -- everyone) is calling you the "new Martina Hingis."
April 2, 2014 -- Updated 1420 GMT (2220 HKT)
At the 2009 Australian Open, French men's tennis was the talk of the town.
April 15, 2014 -- Updated 1800 GMT (0200 HKT)
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO - APRIL 14: Rafael Nadal of Spain sails a boat during day two of the ATP Monte Carlo Rolex Masters Tennis at Monte-Carlo Sporting Club on April 14, 2014 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Rafael Nadal may be most at home on a clay tennis court, but he has always found comfort on the sea.
March 21, 2014 -- Updated 1107 GMT (1907 HKT)
Tennis star Venus Williams reveals how she is beating the autoimmune disease that derailed her career.
March 5, 2014 -- Updated 1014 GMT (1814 HKT)
After two decades dedicated to the game, Amelie Mauresmo wants a second life -- one away from tennis.
Rafael Nadal of Spain wipes his face after losing his men's final match against Stanislas Wawrinka of Switzerland during day 14 of the 2014 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 26, 2014 in Melbourne, Australia.
Almost five years to the day after reducing Roger Federer to tears at the Australian Open, Rafael Nadal shed a few in his own loser's speech.
ADVERTISEMENT