Paris Masters: Spanish duo Rafael Nadal and David Ferrer to meet in semi-finals
Last Updated: 01/11/13 11:10pm
Rafael Nadal: Spaniard marched into last four in French capital
Rafael Nadal ended home interest in the Paris Masters with a 6-4 6-1 quarter-final win against the last Frenchman standing, Richard Gasquet.
Top seed Nadal, appearing at the indoor event for the first time since 2009, was made to work hard during a tight opening set.
The boyhood rivals - born a fortnight apart in June 1986 - exchanged early breaks before Nadal made his move by breaking again to love in the seventh game.
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The Spaniard went on to close out the first set in 34 minutes and dominated thereafter, breaking three more times to improve his career record against Gasquet to 12-0.
World No.1 Nadal will play his countryman David Ferrer in the last four after the defending champion came from a set down to defeat Tomas Berdych 4-6 7-5 6-3 in the last match of the day.
Sixth seed Berdych served up a treat to take the opening set 6-4 courtesy of a solitary break but Ferrer responded immediately to move 3-0 up at the start of the second.
Berdych rallied to level at 4-4, only to then surrender his delivery when 6-5 down and serving to stay in the set.
World No.3 Ferrer broke again for a 3-1 advantage in the decider and went on to close out victory in two hours and four minutes.
Nadal leads the head-to-head with Ferrer 20-4 and won their most recent encounter, this year's French Open final, in straight sets.