Acapulco, February 28: Rafael Nadal cruised into the Mexican Open semi-finals after the top seed outclassed Kwon Soon-woo in straight sets.
Nadal was in devastating form as the 19-time grand slam champion dismantled Kwon 6-2, 6-1 at the ATP 500 tournament in Acapulco on Thursday.
After crushing Miomir Kecmanovic in the last 16, Nadal continued his ruthless path through the draw at the expense of the rising South Korean in one hour, 31 minutes.
Nadal – eyeing his third Acapulco title – hit 25 winners, 11 unforced errors and saved all eight break points he faced to set up a semi-final showdown with Grigor Dimitrov.
Bulgarian Dimitrov snapped a five-match losing streak against three-time major champion Stan Wawrinka by defeating the third seed 6-4 6-4.
Dimitrov – the 2014 Mexican Open champion – had not beaten Wawrinka since 2016 but the former world number three ended his drought in one hour, 25 minutes.
"I've played quite a few times against Stan and we've practised together so many times. Between us, it's mainly a mental battle," Dimitrov said. "I had lost the past five times against him, but those losses have inspired me. Those losses helped me. Even though it hurts saying it, I'm admitting it. I wanted to stand tall tonight."
John Isner – the fifth seed – booked his spot in the semis for the second successive year with a 7-6 (7-3) 3-6 6-2 win over fellow American Tommy Paul.
Isner fired down 22 aces to set up a clash against countryman Taylor Fritz, who topped Kyle Edmund 6-4 6-3.
At the Chile Open, in-form top seed Cristian Garin extended his winning streak en route to the quarter-finals in Santiago.
Garin – the Cordoba and Rio Open champion – celebrated his 10th consecutive victory by downing Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 6-2 0-6 7-6 (7-4) at the ATP 250 event.
Fellow seeds Albert Ramos-Vinolas and Thiago Monteiro also progressed but fifth seed Juan Ignacio Londero was upstaged by wildcard Thiago Seyboth Wild 7-6 (9-7) 6-4.