World number one Rafael Nadal seems to be getting fitter, swifter and sharper and looked at his formidable best blistering past Dominic Thiem at the Monte-Carlo Masters on Friday.
After Thiem’s impressive outing against Novak Djokovic in the third round, it was anticipated that he would offer a tough challenge for Nadal to overcome.
The Spaniard was relentless and beat the Austrian in just 68 minutes to win the tie 6-0, 6-2.
He, thereby, reached his 13th semi-final in Monte-Carlo on the back of his 66th win in the French principality.
Speaking during the aftermath of the contest, Nadal admitted that he actually felt sorry for his Austrian counterpart, although he was highly pleased with his own performance.
The 31-year-old said: “It has been a great result for me, but it isn’t a normal result. He's one of the best players of the world, especially on clay," per The Express.
“Here, I think I played great. I played so well this afternoon, playing very aggressive in general terms, backhand, forehand, serve.
“I’m defending well, returning well. It has been a great day for me, and a very good result against a very difficult rival.
“I’m sorry for him, because he's a good friend. It was a tough score, of course. But I know he is going to be fighting for every title during the clay court season.”
Nadal will be facing fourth-seed Grigor Dimitrov later today in their semi-final clash after the Bulgarian star registered secured a victory over David Goffin on Friday.
Nevertheless, it looks like it will require something very special to stop 'The King of Clay' on his preferred surface particularly with Roger Federer sitting out this stage of the season too.