Nadal reaches summit round

Serena sets up Azarenka clash

Nadal reaches summit round

Former world number one Rafael Nadal advanced to the final of the Brazil Open with a 6-3, 6-7(2), 6-1 victory over Argentina’s Martin Alund.

Sunday’s title decider against Argentina’s David Nalbandian will be the Spaniard’s second straight final since returning from a seven-month layoff with a knee problem.
In his first tournament back from injury last week, the 11-time Grand Slam winner lost to world No 73 Horacio Zeballos in the Chile Open final.

Earlier, Nalbandian said he was confident of clinching his first ATP title since 2010 against Nadal. The former world No 3 progressed to the final of the indoor clay-court event after defeating Italy’s Simone Bolelli 6-3, 7-5.

“I am feeling better as the week goes on with each match and with that my confidence has grown,” the current world No 93 said on Saturday. “Physically I’m feeling very good. I have played two matches that have gone to three sets but the points have been short and for that reason I haven’t felt any negative effects,” he said.

Sunday’s duel will be Nalbandian’s first final since being disqualified for kicking an advertising sign and injuring a line judge at Queen’s Club in London last June.

Serena faces Azarenka

Serena Williams faces the player she will replace on Monday as world number one, Victoria Azarenka, in the final of the Qatar Open after overcoming Maria Sharapova 6-3, 6-2 in Doha on Saturday.

Top seed and defending champion Azarenka defeated Poland's Agnieszka Radwanska 6-3, 6-3 in the other semifinal.

Del Potro in final

Argentine Juan Martin del Potro is favourite to add his name to the banner of champions wrapped around the Ahoy Arena after beating Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov 6-4, 6-4 at the World Indoor Tournament on Saturday.

Runner-up last year, he will face Julien Benneteau, conqueror of champion Roger Federer, in Sunday's final after the Frenchman eliminated compatriot Gilles Simon 6-4, 7-6.

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