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Page last updated at 14:36 GMT, Saturday, 25 April 2009 15:36 UK

Nadal faces Ferrer test in final

Rafael Nadal
World number one Nadal has won 24 straight matches on clay

Rafael Nadal strolled past Nikolay Davydenko 6-3 6-2 to reach his fifth straight Barcelona Open final.

Nadal, who earned his 24th straight win on clay, won in one hour 48 minutes.

The Majorcan, the four-time defending champion, has not dropped his serve throughout the tournament and saved all six of Davydenko's break points.

The world number one will face fellow Spaniard David Ferrer in the final after his compatriot beat Chile's Fernando Gonzalez 2-6 6-2 7-6.

Ferrer struggled in the opening set against the big-hitting Gonzalez but rediscovered his form to take the second with two breaks of the Chilean's serve.

He was broken when serving for the match at 5-3 in the final set but recovered to win the tiebreak 7-5.

Nadal has lost just four times on clay since 2005, most recently to fellow Spaniard Juan Carlos Ferrero in the second round of last year's Rome Masters.

The Mallorcan saved three break points in the first set and broke the ninth-ranked Russian twice.

In the second, Nadal broke to lead 3-1 and then saved three more break points in the next game as Davydenko went on the offensive.

Davydenko wasted the first chance by hitting a crosscourt backhand wide, then watched Nadal slice a perfect crosscourt shot onto the line to save the second before Davydenko hit wide again.

Nadal ended the match with a passing shot down the line to clinch the victory and even his head-to-head record to 3-3 against Davydenko, with the Spaniard winning all three matches on clay.

"It wasn't a great performance but I didn't make too many errors," said the 22-year-old Nadal.

The world number one had a rest day Fon riday after his quarter-final opponent David Nalbandian withdrew ahead of the match with a right hip injury.



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see also
Davydenko sets up Nadal encounter
24 Apr 09 |  Tennis
Nadal handed bye into semi-finals
23 Apr 09 |  Tennis
Nadal eases past Gil in Barcelona
22 Apr 09 |  Tennis
Nadal seals fifth Monte Carlo win
19 Apr 09 |  Tennis
Nadal wins fourth Barcelona title
04 May 08 |  Tennis


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