Nadal rips Thiem, into Monte Carlo semis

(AP Photo/Alberto Saiz, File)

MONACO (AP) Rafael Nadal's bid for a record-extending 11th Monte Carlo Masters title is proving more comfortable than he imagined after his latest return from injury.

Others may not be so surprised, given how the top-ranked Spaniard won nine straight games while beating fifth-seeded Dominic Thiem 6-0, 6-2 to reach the semifinals on Friday.

"I played great. I played so well this afternoon, playing very aggressive, backhand, forehand, serve. I'm defending well, returning well," said Nadal, affording himself another rare compliment. "It is difficult to play better than today. Being honest, I have to recognize that."

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2018 ATP Rankings
Rank Player Points
1 R. Nadal 8,770
2 R. Federer 8,670
3 M. Cilic 4,985
4 A. Zverev 4,925
5 G. Dimitrov 4,635
6 J. Del Potro 4,470
7 D. Thiem 3,665
8 K. Anderson 3,390
9 J. Isner 3,125
10 D. Goffin 3,110
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2018 WTA Rankings
Rank Player Points
1 S. Halep 8,140
2 C. Wozniacki 6,790
3 G. Muguruza 6,065
4 E. Svitolina 5,630
5 J. Ostapenko 5,307
6 K. Pliskova 4,730
7 C. Garcia 4,615
8 V. Williams 4,276
9 S. Stephens 3,938
10 P. Kvitova 3,271
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