Rafael Nadal overcomes Fabio Fognini in four sets in US Open second round
By Anthony on May 31, 2019
Rafael Nadal overcame Fabio Fognini in four sets to book his place in the semi-finals of the US Open. Fognini, who has been in sensational form this year, lost the first set 6-4, but served out the first two sets to Nadal as he secured his place in the third round with a 6-4, 6-3 win.
Fognini had beaten Nadal in three previous meetings on clay, with the Swiss winning each time at the All England Club in London. In each of those encounters he defeated the world number 1, with this result ensuring that he will not be travelling to his home country in July.
Fognini was one of the favourites going into the tournament and with Nadal also expected to beat Roger Federer in his semi-final, the Spaniard’s chances appear to have been boosted. He will now face Australian Bernard Tomic in a match that could decide who will progress to the last four of the competition.
The world number one will be able to look back on what is a remarkable run of success on the red clay courts, winning his fifth major title at Doha in November.
After opening at 6-0, Nadal went on to win the opening two games. He then fought hard to get ahead and had two chances to serve out the third set. Fognini, however, saved his game each time, which allowed Nadal to secure the title in just 40 minutes.
Nadal is now a quarter-final draw favourite with the chance to extend his lead in Group B, which also includes Federer and Dominic Thiem. He has now won 11 of his previous 14 matches on clay during this year’s hard-court season.