Djokovic, Nadal advance to 3rd round in Madrid Open

Kei Nishikori of Japan returns the ball to David Ferrer of Spain during a Madrid Open tennis tournament match in Madrid Thursday

Kei Nishikori of Japan returns the ball to David Ferrer of Spain during a Madrid Open tennis tournament match in Madrid Thursday

Djokovic defeated Spanish veteran Feliciano Lopez 6-4, 7-5, while Nadal eased past Nick Kyrgios of Australia 6-3, 6-1.

Next up for the Spaniard is a meeting with world No. 2 Novak Djokovic.

In his first match since changing his coaching team in an attempt to change fortunes following a hard start to the year, Djokovic was taken to three sets by Spain's Nicolas Almagro in a match which lasted for two and a quarter hours. "In history we have never seen what he achieved during those years". "That pumped me up obviously".

World number one Andy Murray is in action later against Croatia's Borna Coric. I don't know how much, you know, I can play, how much this wrist going to hold for couple more matches.

"I think that even though I played really badly, my attitude has been very positive", Nadal explained.

Uruguay's Pablo Cuevas recovered from losing the second set 6-0 to beat Benoit Paire and will meet Germany's Alexander Zverev, a 6-4 6-4 victor over Tomas Berdych.

"In the beginning I wasn't playing 100 percent", Nishikori said.

Later on Rafael Nadal battled through against Fabio Fognini 7-6 (3), 3-6, 6-4.

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In the WTA Madrid Open, Svetlana Kuznetsova remained one of only three of the top 10 seeds left in the draw with a 6-4, 7-5 win over Wang Qiang to reach the quarter-finals.

Nadal did not perhaps look quite as convincing in his opening round, but seems to be rising to form, but this will be a better test. Nadal got the better of Goffin in his great run in Monte Carlo - but can he give Nadal a good run out in front of a home crowd? Their second encounter was at the Internazionali BNL d'Italia in Rome and after Kyrgios won the first set, Nadal came back to win the match.

In the semifinals of the tournament in Madrid, 30-year-old host Rafael Nadal will meet with 29-year-old Serb Novak Djokovic.

In the WTA Madrid Open, Canadian Eugenie Bouchard advanced when top seed Angelique Kerber retired with a hamstring injury trailing 6-3, 5-0 in their third-round match.

Djokovic, who has refused to rule out appointing Andre Agassi as coach, prowled around the court and had the bit between his teeth as he stayed in the hunt for only a second title of the year with the French Open on the horizon.

Murray, who lost last year's final to Djokovic in Madrid, had 28 unforced errors in a disappointing outing under the closed roof of the center court in Madrid.

After failing to make the quarter-finals at the Monte-Carlo Masters, the 2015 French Open victor will be hoping for drastic improvement at the Internazionali d'Italia next week.

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