Rafael Nadal advances at Miami Open after a hard-fought win on his 1000th match

Rafael Nadal produced a brilliant comeback to register a win on his 1000th tour level match by beating Philipp Kohlschreiber.

tennis Updated: Mar 27, 2017 10:39 IST
Miami Open,Rafael Nadal,Philipp Kohlschreiber
Rafael Nadal celebrates his win over Philipp Kohlschreiber ar the Miami Open.(AFP)

Rafael Nadal celebrated his 1,000th tour level match is style as he came back from behind to register a thrilling win over German veteran Philipp Kohlschreiber to reach the fourth round of the Miami Open on Sunday.

World number 31 Kohlschreiber was the dominating one early, ripping through the first set in only 21 minutes but fifth seed Nadal flipped the switch and turned the match on its head to prevail 0-6, 6-2, 6-3 on the main stadium hardcourt at Crandon Park.

It was the first time Nadal had failed to win a game in the first set of an ATP tour match since 2008, the ATP said.

The 30-year-old Spaniard ignited the near-capacity crowd with his typically determined comeback to clinch his 822nd career victory.

He joins a small group of 11 players headed by Jimmy Connors (1,535) to have played at least 1,000 matches.

While Nadal played in the relative comfort of the late afternoon, Kei Nishikori also took three sets and nearly three hours to advance under a high noon sun, outlasting Spain’s Fernando Verdasco 7-6(2) 6-7(5) 6-1.

Milos Raonic withdrew before his match against American qualifier Jared Donaldson, blaming a persistent hamstring injury.

“It’s related to the previous injury I sustained almost four weeks ago ... in Delray Beach,” the Canadian told reporters.

“It’s the same muscle in the hamstring, up high. It got progressively worse after my first round. It seemed like it was not possible for me to compete today without putting myself at significant risk.”

Raonic said he would not return to the tour until he felt 100 percent fit.

“That could be in two weeks, that could be a little bit longer.”

First Published: Mar 27, 2017 09:07 IST