Kyrgios too good for Nadal in Cincinnati

Nick Kyrgios has surged into the last four of the ATP Masters 1000 event in Cincinnati with a dominant win over Rafael Nadal on Friday.

With both men backing up after round of 16 wins earlier in the day, the Australian charged out of the blocks in the first set and was never headed in the 6-2 7-5 victory.

Unseeded Kyrgios broke Nadal’s serve in the opening game of the match and broke again en route to taking the first set in just 25 minutes.

Nadal saved match points in the ninth and 10th games of the second set and broke Kyrgios to get back to 5-5.

However, three uncharacteristic forehand errors gifted Kyrgios his fourth break of the encounter and he served out the match with his 10th ace.

The victory was number 100 for Kyrgios on the ATP Tour.

In the day session, Kyrgios won his rain-delayed match against Ivo Karlovic 4-6 7-6 (8-6) 6-3 on Friday.

Karlovic was leading 4-3 on serve on Thursday before rain put a stop to proceedings after he had hit eight aces to Kyrgios’ one.

The big-serving Croatian took the first set when play resumed but Kyrgios fought back via a second-set tiebreaker, showing the Ohio crowd a preview of his nightclub moves in celebration.

Nadal needed an hour and 37 minutes on court to dispatch fellow Spaniard Albert Ramos-Vinolas 7-6 (7-1) 6-2.

Nadal will return to world No.1 next week after nine years away from the top spot, the longest gap in ATP rankings history. He first ascended to the top spot following the Masters in 2008.

Seventh-seeded Grigor Dimitrov was the first player through to the semi-finals after he made light work of Japan’s Yuichi Sugita.

The Bulgarian was untroubled in a 6-2 6-1 victory and he will play 14th-seeded John Isner in the last four.

Isner beat wildcard Jared Donaldson 7-6 (7-4) 7-5 in an all-American battle, winning the only break point of the match to go ahead 6-5 in the second set and closing it out with his 25th ace of the match.

In the top half of the draw, Spanish veteran David Ferrer upset Dominic Them 6-3 6-3.

The third-seeded Austrian was no match for the unseeded Ferrer, who broke serve four times.

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