Nadal, Murray And Serena Win As Wawrinka And Sharapova Fall In Rome

Rafael Nadal defeated Mikhail Youzhny 6-7, 6-1, 6-2 to advance to the quarter-finals of the Internazionali BNL d’italia in Rome on Thursday.  The first set was on serve until the seventh game when the world number one broke his opponent to take a 4-3 lead.  In the ninth game Youzhny broke back to put the game back on serve at 5-5.  Both players held their service games to take the game to a first set tiebreak which was won by the Russian 7-6.

In the second Youzhny broke Nadal in the first game but the Spaniard broke back in the fourth game to get it back on serve.  Nadal broke again with a cross court winner and consolidated his break by holding his serve to lead 5-2.  The number one seed took the set 6-2 after an unforced error from his opponent.  Nadal found his rhythm breaking Youzhny on two occasions to take a 5-0 lead in the third set.  

In the sixth game the Russian held his first service game of the set to deny Nadal a break point.  The world number one was unfazed holding his serve to take the set 6-1 and the match 6-7, 6-2, 6-1.  Nadal will face Britain’s Andy Murray in the quarter-finals.  The Scot defeated Jurgen Melzer 7-6, 6-4 to advance to the quarter-finals.

Tommy Haas defeated Stanilas Wawrinka 5-7, 6-2, 6-3 in their Round of 16 match at the Internazionali BNL d’italia in Rome on Thursday.  The first set started well before an exchange of breaks to bring it back on serve heading for a tie break.  In the 11th game Wawrinka was presented with an opportunity and he took it with a cross court winner to break his opponent to lead 6-5.

The Australian Open champion held his nerve and serve to take the set 7-5 hitting four aces and 15 winners.  In the second the Swiss broke Haas to pick up where he left off.  The German didn’t waste time breaking back immediately to get it back on serve at 2-2.  The 15th seed consolidated his break with a second and held his serve to take the second set 6-2 smacking 11 winners and converted three of five break points.

In the third Haas made the first move breaking his opponent in the eighth game and served out with a huge ace to take the set 6-3 taking the match 5-7, 6-2 and 6-3.  Tommy Haas will face Grigor Dimitrov next.

On the women’s side of things, World number one Serena Williams defeated fellow American Varvara Lepchenko 6-1, 6-2 to advance the quarter-finals.  Williams broke her fellow American in the fourth game  to take a 3-1 lead and broke again in the sixth game after an unforced error from Lepchenko.  Williams continued her dominance taking the set 6-1.  In the second the world number one stepped up and broke her opponent in the first game.  Lepchenko broke back immediately to get the game back on serve.  It was not long until the 17-time Major champion broke Lepchenko for a 3-2 lead and consolidated it with a hold at 4-2.  The number one seed broke her compatriot once again in the seventh game and served it out to take the set  6-2 and the match 6-1, 6-2.  Williams will face face Shuai Zhang who defeated American Christina McHale 6-2, 4-6, 6-2.

Elsewhere, Li Na ousted Samantha Stosur.  The Chinese won 6-3, 6-1.  Li will now meet hometown heroine Sara Errani.  Elsewhere, Ana Ivanovic defeated Maria Sharapova in straights sets 6-1, 6-4 to book her place in the quarter-finals.  Ivanovic broke Sharapova in the first game of the set and maintained her break unchallenged to take the first set 6-1.  In the second the Serb broke her opponent once again however this time the Russian broke back to get it back on serve.  In the ninth game the 11th seed stroked a forehand cross court to break Sharapova to take a 5-4 lead and served it out taking the match 6-1, 6-4.  Ivanovic will face Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro in the last eight.

Agnieszka Radwanska was also on top form.  The Pole defeated crowd favourite Francesa Schiavone  6-4, 6-1.  Radwanska faces Jelena Jankovic in the quarters.