Nadal battles past Popyrin for a Madrid Open quaterfinal spot
It was a typical Nadal match on clay where he attacked his opponent repeatedly slowly building up points before delivering the finishing blow. Popyrin quickly felt the full force of Nadal as he dropped his serve twice early. At 4-1, Nadal had a chance to confirm the 2nd break but Popyrin actually pulled it back.
He would win his serve to make it 4-3 but Nadal would close it by winning the next two games winning the opening 6-3. Popyrin was pretty good on his first serve but on his 2nd he was abysmal winning only 3 of 14 points.
The 2nd set more or less featured a similar pattern with Nadal once again dominating rallies whenever he had a chance to. Popyrin tried to shorten the points but he could not deliver it consistently and Nadal took an early break 3-0. From there it was more or less cruise control for both.
We did not see any more break points in the set and Nadal served it out 6-3. The Spaniard awaits the winner of Evans vs Zverev in the quarterfinal.