|Nationality||Player||Set 1||Set 2||Set 3||Set 4||Set 5|
- - NADAL 6-3 - GAME, SET AND MATCH - With Nadal serving for the match, Giraldo moves 0-30 up with a lovely piece of tactical workmanship, Nadal defending in vain. An ace reduces the deficit and Nadal powers to 30-all on the next point. Then comes a monster of a rally... with both players on the limit, Giraldo secures break point with a winner from mid-court. He comes to the net to try to claim it - and Nadal passes him! And Nadal wins from there, clinching it when Giraldo sends a return wide.
- - NADAL 5-3 - Nadal works his way into position at the front of the court with Giraldo pushed way back - but his delicate soft volley comes back off the netcord. He levels but falls behind again when a brutal backhand flies just long. The Spaniard hits wide and the game ends when his Colombian opponent slams a backhand winner up the line.
- - NADAL 5-2 - Nadal loses patience on the opening rally but comes back to 15-15. He then attacks the net and volleys into it, before pushing Giraldo back and forcing him into an error; Nadal then hits a brilliant winner for 40-30 only to be pegged back to deuce. A wide forehand then one into the net seals the game for the Spaniard.
- - NADAL 4-2 - Some great shots from Giraldo, including a fizzing low backhand from the corner, great angle to put that away. 30-0. Giraldo almost nabs a love hold but, after a decent return from Nadal, he goes long and has a yell at himself. And then an inexplicable error from the Colombian as, after leaving Nadal in a heap in the corner with a great shot, he puts the finish long! 40-30. Next serve is sweet though and he holds.
- - NADAL 4-1 - Easy hold again from Nadal who is cruising now.
- - NADAL 3-1 - BREAK! Giraldo resists a Nadal challenge to go 40-30 up but then spoons a simple forehand into the net. Deuce. Then a super return from Nadal gives him break point - taken on second serve as Giraldo's delivery is slow, allowing Nadal to boss the point, Giraldo going wide in the end.
- - NADAL 2-1 - BREAK! Scrappy Giraldo hauls Nadal to 30-30 and earns a break point as he meets the forehand volley with a vicious drive. Then a rally that Nadal wins with a furious backhand. Brave, back to deuce. But another break point to Giraldo as Nadal nets. The next point yields a manic rally that Nadal somehow wins, despite Giraldo having three chances to bury it, his final shot long. But another break point to the tenacious Colombian. TAKEN! Fizzing forehand return that Nadal can't reach!
- - NADAL 2-0 - BREAK! Very aggressive game from Nadal against serve and he leaves a shell-shocked Giraldo a break down with a series of ferocious returns. He breaks to love.
- - NADAL 1-0 - Nadal holds the first game of the second set, only dropping a single point in the process.
- - NADAL 7-6(6) SET! The crowd loved that from Nadal, whose dropshot this time is eased too far wide for the lob, meaning Giraldo's clipped volley lands wide. Set point Nadal - not taken though as his lob goes long. Gah, Giraldo fluffs his lines when it matters the most on serve, stumbling into his shot, and it's set point again Nadal... There it is with an unreturnable serve, Nadal first set after over an hour.
- - NADAL 6-6 (5-5) - Gasps again as Giraldo unleashes a searing backhand return across court that leaves Nadal scratching his head. 3-3 and both minis gobbled up... More great forehands from Giraldo as Nadal looks increasingly frustrated. Still level though. Oh what a lob from Giraldo to respond to a Nadal dropshot! Nadal stranded by the topspin that sends it up and down beautifully! Back to 5-5 though as Nadal holds.
- - NADAL - 6-6 (3-2) Nadal goes two mini-breaks up with a serve volley and a killer return... But Giraldo breaks back with his opponent going long and looking miffed at himself.
- - NADAL 6-6 - Nadal again holds with zero fuss or resistance, ending with an ace to take this first set to a tiebreak!
- - NADAL 5-6 - Cracking shot from Giraldo as he responds to a Nadal crosscourt shot with another killer forehand, this time sharply down the line. Gasps from the crowd, repeated as he moves 30-0 ahead. He sinks a backhand to go 40-0 up but misses out on the love hold with a weak backand into the net. Nadal claws another one back as he continues to work Giraldo's backhand, 40-30. But Giraldo wraps up the game with another big forehand. He likes that.
- - NADAL 5-5 - Nadal holds easy as you like, barely time to sniff at his lowly opponent.
- - NADAL 4-5 - Three break points to Nadal after a big miss from Giraldo... How quickly matches turn against the best players in history. But an ace brings it back to 30-40, clap clap. Wow, and a massive - and risky - forehand drive clips the baseline and zips beyond Nadal to deuce. And another aggressive piece of play from the underdog sees him move to advantage, and he goes on to hold. Nadal serving to stay in the set.
- - NADAL 4-4 - First point goes against serve as Nadal response to a standard return is a touch loose. Line judge incorrectly calls the next first serve out, then corrects himself. Giraldo challenges anyway as he senses an opportunity to rattle Nadal - while it's overruled, the tactic seems to have worked as Nadal double backhands wide on the subsequent point. 0-30. Nadal pulls one back with a second serve that Giraldo reads but knocks wide. That is the cue for Nadal to fight back and hold.
- - NADAL 3-4 - Nadal applying the pressure, but for the moment the Colombian is holding his own. 30-30 could be just the opportunity the Spaniard needs, but two authoritative points close the game out - a smash putaway first, and a booming forehand which Nadal cannot keep in play.
- - NADAL 3-3 - Nadal's serving has been excellent all week, and it's in evidence again as he eases into a 40-0 lead. Giraldo misses a forehand as he tries to go all out for the line, and that hands Nadal the game.
- - NADAL 2-3 - Strong hold of serve from Giraldo, who shows some confidence to deal with Nadal as the left-hander moves into the net behind his groundstrokes. The Colombian's net play and volleying not found wanting, and he holds to love.
- - NADAL 2-2 - Just a chink of hope for Giraldo at 15-30 up on the Nadal serve, but that passes as the Spaniard goes up a gear. With some pressing, relentless points, the world number two reels off three points in a row to level things up.
- - NADAL 1-2 - The contest settling into something of a pattern now. Giraldo having to fight tooth and nail for every point, and the longer the rally, the more likely Nadal will pinch the point. Despite being pegged back to 30-30, Giraldo digs deep to close out another hold of serve and keep his nose in front.
- - NADAL 1-1 - No nonsense from Nadal - the Spaniard holds to love. Giraldo weak behind the serve, and errors ruin his returning.
- - NADAL 0-1 - Good start from the Colombian - a ripping forehand across the court takes him into a 30-0 lead. Giraldo worn down by Nadal in a long rally to give Nadal his first point of the match, but finishes strongly and Nadal slaps a rare limp forehand into the net to give up the game.
- - We're ready to begin. It's Giraldo to serve first.
- - The players are just going through their final warm-ups. Play due to start shortly.
- - HEAD TO HEAD - Nadal and Giraldo have met three times. Nadal has won all three. They played each other last year in Tokyo, and Nadal triumphed 6-4 6-4.
- - Things have been relatively simple for Nadal so far this week - Giraldo has yet to drop a set either. Full drawsheet
- - Good morning and welcome to live text commentary from Tokyo where Rafael Nadal takes on Santiago Giraldo in the quarter-final of the Japan Open.
|Date of Birth||03/06/1986|
|Date of Birth||27/11/1987|