Verdasco Earns Hard-Fought Win Against Rafael Nadal at the Miami Open

Make that two in a row for Fernando Verdasco

The 31-year-old Spanish tennis player defeated former World No. 1 and fellow Spaniard Rafael Nadal in the third round of the Miami Open 6-4, 2-6, 6-3.

Fernando Verdasco

Verdasco, seeded 29th, lost the first 13 times he played Nadal but has now beaten him twice in a row. The other victory came in 2012 in Madrid.

Nadal, who was seeded second, has never won the tournament in 11 appearances. It’s the only event he hasn’t won in so many attempts.

Nadal converted only three of 12 break-point chances and committed 40 unforced errors, with just 18 winners.

Nadal dealt with several health issues in 2014 and said that while he’s fully recovered, he hasn’t regained his confidence.

“It’s a question of being relaxed enough to play well,” the 14-time Grand Slam champion said. “I’m still playing with too much nerves for a lot of moments, in important moments, still playing a little bit anxious in those moments.

“But I’m going to fix it — I don’t know if in one week, in six months, or in one year, but I’m going to do it.”

Verdasco next faces Argentina’s Juan Monaco in the fourth round.

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