Rafael Nadal beats Benoit Paire at the Rogers Cup

Rex Christensen
August 10, 2018

Top seed Rafael Nadal blew past patchy Frenchman Benoit Paire 6-2, 6-3 on Wednesday to begin his quest for a fourth Canadian trophy at the Toronto Masters.

Novak Djokovic sent Peter Polansky of Canada to a 6-3, 6-4 defeat on Wednesday (Aug 8) as the four-time champion powered into the third round at the Toronto Masters before insisting he's "comfortable" with the controversial "shot clock" innovation.

Nadal, playing for the first time since a five-set loss to Djokovic in the Wimbledon semifinals, topped France's Benoit Paire 6-2 6-3 in a night match after a series of stoppages due to rain. A former world No. 1, Djokovic is seeded ninth in the event he last won in 2016. "I've known him, I've practised with him, but I've never played an official match so definitely not easy to find a rhythm from the beginning of the match", said Djokovic.

American Frances Tiafoe beat Raonic 7-6 (7/4), 4-6, 6-1 in a match hit by a weather interruption of more than two and a half hours.

Djokovic, coming off his fourth Wimbledon title last month, had seven aces and never faced a break point in the 1-hour, 25-minute match.

"I thought I found pretty good accuracy and angles with the first serve, and also my second serve worked pretty well".

Nadal came out firing a dazzling array of shots that had Paire racing around the blue hard court from the outset and even desperately launching his racquet on one occasion in a failed attempt at a return that gave the Spaniard a 5-2 lead. "In the moments when I probably needed to step it up, I did".

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Nadal will face Stan Wawrinka of Switzerland, a 1-6, 7-6 (2), 7-6 (10) victor over Marton Fucsovics of Hungary.

Djokovic, the victor of 30 career Masters titles, will next face rising Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas, who beat seventh seed Dominic Thiem 6-3, 7-6 (8/6).

German second seed Alexander Zverev, the victor last week in Washington, beat American Bradley Klahn 6-4 6-4 while fourth-seeded South African Kevin Anderson edged Russia's Evgeny Donskoy 4-6 6-2 7-6 (7-0).

Teenaged prodigy Shapovalov eliminated Italian 14th seed Fabio Fognini victor last weekend in Los Cabos, 6-3, 7-5.

Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina withdrew because of a left wrist injury.

Del Potro wrote on Twitter that his wrist "needs some days of rest". Haase beat Mikhail Youzhny of Russian Federation 7-5, 6-2.

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