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French Open 2021: Rafael Nadal storms into his 14th semi-final, beats 10th seed Diego Schwartzman

French Open 2021: Defending champion Rafael Nadal drops a set at Roland-Garros for the first time since last edition but rallied past 10th seed Diego Schwartzman to enter the semi-finals of the Claycourt Grand Slam for the 14th time.

Rafael Nadal entered the semi-finals at Roland Garros on Wednesday (AP Image)

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Rafael Nadal defeated Diego Schwartzman to reach his 14th semi-finals at French Open
  • Nadal dropped a set at French Open for the first time since the last edition
  • The defending champion will face with Novak Djokovic or Matteo Berrettini in semis

Tenth seed Diego Schwartzman put an end to Rafael Nadal’s 36-set winning streak at Roland Garros but the defending champion completely dismantled the Argentine after it to reach French Open semi-finals for the 14th time in his career.

Such was the wrath of the Spaniard that, he did not lose a single game in the final set to complete a 6-3, 4-6, 6-4, 6-0 win over the world number 10.

Nadal’s personal best of consecutive sets won is 38, from 2016-18 at Roland Garros. The men’s Grand Slam record is held by Bjorn Borg, with 41 consecutive sets won at the French Open.

The 35-year-old will now face the winner of the match between world number one Novak Djokovic and world number 9 Matteo Berrettini later on Wednesday. If Djokovic wins, he will meet Nadal for the 58th time in his career. The two had also locked horns during last year’s final.

The other men’s semifinal will be No. 5 Stefanos Tsitsipas vs. No. 6 Alexander Zverev.

Nadal, who turned 35 last week, is now 105-2 for his career at Roland Garros.

The world number three just two wins from eclipsing the men’s mark for most total Grand Slam singles titles that he currently shares with Roger Federer.

In addition to his 13 trophies at Roland-Garros, four in a row from 2005-08, five in a row from 2010-14 and another four in a row so far since 2017, the left-hander have won four titles at the US Open, two at Wimbledon and one at the Australian Open.

“I always feel the support from my family [his father and sister are in the stands]. The real support, without pressure. I can’t thank them enough, and my team that was very similar to when I was younger. Also my fans, who support me in my low moments. It is not easy for a 35-year-old to be here!” Nadal said in an on-court interview after the match.

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