Australian Open: Nadal downs showman Monfils

Fourteen-time Grand Slam champion Nadal will feature in the last eight of a major for the first time since the 2015 French Open after beating the entertaining Monfils 6-3, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 on Rod Laver Arena on Monday.

RafaelNadal

Fourteen-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal continued his impressive run at the Australian Open.

Resurgent Rafael Nadal overcame a fightback from the flamboyant Gael Monfils to set up a mouth-watering Australian Open quarterfinal against Milos Raonic.

Fourteen-time Grand Slam champion Nadal will feature in the last eight of a major for the first time since the 2015 French Open after beating the entertaining Monfils 6-3, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 on Rod Laver Arena on Monday.

The 2009 champion Nadal was far more consistent than the unpredictable sixth-seeded Frenchman, who paid the price for making 64 unforced errors.

A vibrant Nadal broke six times and had too much nous for Monfils, but the World No. 6 had the crowd on their feet with some jaw-dropping shots as he threatened a comeback before the ninth seed got the job done.





Nadal made a blistering start, opening up a 3-0 lead as Monfils struggled to get going and was unable to find a way back into the first set.

The Spaniard broke in the first game of the second set and wore down last year's US Open semi-finalist, who broke back to level at 3-3 only to lose three games in a row to go 2-0 down.

Showman Monfils was not finished yet, though, as he conjured up some sublime shots and served out the third after Nadal put a forehand wide to go a break down at 5-4.

Monfils looked like a completely different player and seemed set to take a high quality match the distance when he broke to lead 4-2 in the fourth, but Nadal turned the tide - winding up his forehand with great effect - and won four games in a row to set up a meeting with third seed Raonic.

STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN

Nadal [9] bt Monfils [6] 6-3 6-3 4-6 6-4

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Nadal – 21/27
Monfils – 52/64

ACES
Nadal – 2
Monfils – 15

BREAK POINTS WON
Nadal – 6/17
Monfils – 3/6

FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Nadal – 73
Monfils – 58

PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Nadal – 72/63
Monfils – 66/44

TOTAL POINTS
Nadal – 126
Monfils – 105