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Nadal rebounds and defeats Mayer in three sets in Barcelona

Nadal rebounds and defeats Mayer in three sets in Barcelona

Rafael Nadal went from low to high and defeated Argentine Leonard Mayer 6-7 (7), 6-4, 6-2 to advance to the third round of the Barcelona Open, and keep alive his streak of never losing consecutive games in clay courts.

Nadal, number two in the world rankings, had just lost to Fabio Fognini in the semifinals of the Monte Carlo Masters.

Eleven times champion in Barcelona, ​​Nadal will now face his Spanish compatriot David Ferrer. Ferrer, 37, who played for Barcelona for the last time after saying goodbye to the circuit, defeated France’s Lucas Pouille 6-3, 6-1 in his second-round match.

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“I’m enjoying the day to day,” said Ferrer. “Playing against Rafa would be a gift for me, if I have the opportunity I hope to finish the game.”

Nadal blew two set balls after trading service breaks late in the first set. He bounced back quickly by breaking Mayer’s serve in the first game of the second set, and proceeded to accelerate to victory over the No. 63 ranking.

After reaching the quarter-finals in Monte Carlo, Guido Pella of Argentina beat sixth-seeded Russian Karen Khachanov 6-2 7-6 (4) to enter the third round. Pella is 16-4 on brick dust this season. Khachanov has lost seven first-quarter losses so far this year.

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Fognini will not be able to chain titles after Monte Carlo because he dropped out of the Barcelona tournament due to a muscle injury. The Italian was replaced by Roberto Carballés Baena, in 104th place in the ranking, who started with a 6-7 (4), 6-4, 6-2 victory before his Spanish compatriot Nicola Kuhn.

Russian Daniil Medvedev, the seventh seed to reach the semifinals in Monte Carlo, advanced to the third round by defeating Albert Ramos-Viñolas 6-3, 2-6, 6-1. American Mackenzie McDonald advanced after beating Gilles Simon (11th seed) 6-3, 6-2. AP

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