Indian Wells 2022: Nadal edges Opelka, Norrie breezes past Brooksby

Rafael Nadal will face Nick Kyrgios and Cameron Norrie will face Carlos Alcaraz Garfia in the quarter-finals on Friday.

Rafael Nadal celebrates his win over Reilly Opelka at the 2022 Indian Wells. (Image: Twitter/ Roland Garros)

Rafael Nadal had to work his socks off but managed to secure a hard-earned victory against Reilly Opelka in the round of 16 of the 2022 Indian Wells on Thursday. The Spaniard won 7-6 (7-3) 7-6 (7-5) in what was a grueling encounter to book his place in the quarter-finals. Cameron Norrie also punched his ticket into the next round after beating Jenson Brooksby 6-2 6-4 in what was also a rather comfortable encounter. Nadal will face Nick Kyrgios and Norrie will face Carlos Alcaraz Garfia in the quarter-finals on Friday.

Opelka managed to earn nine aces in the match while Nadal could only score six. The American did, however, commit five double faults, two more than his opponent on the day. However, the Spaniard had a whopping 85% and 83% win percentages on the first and second serve respectively. Opelka’s was 76% and 42%. Both players converted one break point each but Nadal had five opportunities while Opelka had four. They also won 11 service games each.

Read More – What is Rafael Nadal’s Net Worth, Salary, Prize Money, Brand Endorsements-2022

“I think I played well,” Nadal said. “It is difficult because you need to find the right balance. When you are playing points from the baseline you think you can’t miss because you won’t have a lot of opportunities. So you need to find the balance to not allow him to come in and not taking big risks.”

Norrie sees off Brooksby

After cruising through his first two rounds with victories over Pedro Martinez and Nikoloz Basilashvili on smaller courts, defending champion Norrie produced his best tennis of the tournament on the biggest stage, defeating talented American Jenson Brooksby 6-2, 6-4 to reach the quarter-finals.

Norrie’s ability to cause problems on the Brooksby serve defined a high-quality match, as the Brit broke five times on his way to his 11th victory in 12 matches, a remarkable turnaround after a slow start to the season in which he lost his first four matches. Norrie’s heavy-hitting continued in the second set after sealing the first, but Brooksby’s creative game began to pay off as he broke early and took a 3-0 lead. On serve, however, Norrie’s continued aggression made life difficult for the two-time Tour finalist. Brooksby’s final three service games of the match were taken by the Brit, who came back to win in one hour and 38 minutes.

Read More – What is Cameron Norrie’s net worth, prize money, salary and brand endorsements

“It was really difficult. I love playing on this court, obviously,” said Norrie. “Jenson’s so tricky and came out with a gameplan and managed to execute from the beginning and didn’t really miss too much. [I had] one slight lapse in concentration in the second set, but [I am] really enjoying my tennis and happy to sneak through another one.”

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