Dominant Nadal makes light work of Sousa
World number two Rafael Nadal was in inspired form on Centre Court, cruising past his fourth-round opponent Joao Sousa in straight sets.
Rafael Nadal maintained his supreme form at Wimbledon as he cruised into the quarter-finals with a dominant 6-2 6-2 6-2 win over Joao Sousa.
Nadal’s coach Francisco Roig claimed the third seed was “playing without any weaknesses” at the grand slam following a brilliant display against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in round three, and the 18-time major winner was at his scintillating best in Monday’s tie.
Sousa was unable to get close to the French Open champion on Centre Court, with the Portuguese – who shocked 13th seed Marin Cilic earlier in the competition – failing to claim a single break point throughout.
After some wicked shots in the final set, Nadal wrapped up the win in style on the first of three match points to progress into the last eight, where he will face Sam Querrey or Tennys Sandgren.
Nadal started off as he meant to go on and broke twice in the opening four games to take a 4-0 lead, with Sousa only able to win four points in response.
Sousa avoided an unwanted hat-trick of breaks against him when he held to love to pull a game back, but a passing winner from Nadal sealed the set in the Spaniard’s favour.
The world number two’s dominance told on Sousa early in the second set, as he aired his frustration with members of his team after Nadal won against serve for a third time.
Sousa’s frustration turned to admiration soon after when he applauded a wonderful forehand from his opponent, who claimed the set.
Having pulled level on his serve after going 1-0 down in the third set, Nadal came out on top in a 20-shot rally with a sublime cross-court backhand before breaking with the next point.
Another stunning winner followed on Nadal’s next break of serve, before he capped off an exceptional performance with an ace to hold to love.
A 39th Grand Slam quarter-final awaits…
— ATP Tour (@ATP_Tour) July 8, 2019
Rafael Nadal  bt Joao Sousa 6-2 6-2 6-2
Nadal – 30/10
Sousa – 16/15
Nadal – 5/3
Sousa – 4/0
BREAK POINTS WON
Nadal – 6/8
Sousa – 0/0
FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Nadal – 57
Sousa – 68
PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Nadal – 85/69
Sousa – 56/46
Nadal – 84
Sousa – 53