Top seed Rafael Nadal cruised into the quarterfinals of the Qatar Open with a routine 6-2, 6-2 victory over qualifier Denis Gremelmayr on Wednesday.
“The conditions weren’t easy, you try to move your legs at the last moment,” the Spaniard said in a court-side interview.
“I didn’t have a chance to practice a lot in the off-season, not as much as I would have liked. These matches are really important and the best practice I can have.”
Nadal had been troubled by a shoulder injury for several weeks but there was little sign of this as Gremelmayr, ranked 189 in the world, was forced to save a break point in the opening game.
The German lost his next service game, a poor forehand into the net putting Nadal 2-1 ahead and a break up.
Nadal seemed determined to avoid another long match after taking more than two-and-a-half hours to defeat first-round opponent Philipp Kohlschreiber in three sets on Tuesday, with the schedule offering no rest days for the top seeds.
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