Rafael Nadal will have revenge on his mind when he clashes against Fabio Fognini for the Bet-at-Home Open title tomorrow (2 August).
Nadal made quick work of another Italian, Andreas Seppi, in reaching his third Hamburg final and 96th overall on the ATP World Tour ysterday. He capitalised on his second match point to prevail 6-1, 6-2 in 80 minutes, firing 21 winners.
The 2008 champion improved to 25-6 on clay this season and will look to extend his streak of having won at least one European clay-court title every year since 2004. Nadal will square off against Fognini for the third time this season at an ATP World Tour 500 event, with the Italian claiming a pair of upsets in Rio de Janeiro and Barcelona. He is just the second player to defeat Nadal multiple times on clay in a single season and needed one hour and 24 minutes to dispatch French qualifier Lucas Pouille 6-2, 7-6 yesterday. The Italian won 93 per cent of first serve points, while saving both break points faced. Pouille was on the brink of forcing a decider when Fognini faced a set point on serve at 6-5 in the second, but the eighth seed reeled off nine of the next 11 points to claim victory.
Fognini is 3-6 in ATP World Tour finals, capturing a title in each of the last four seasons.
Britain’s Jamie Murray and John Peers are facing the Colombian pair Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah in the doubles final. Wimbledon runners-up Murray and Peers advanced to the title match in Hamburg when top seeds Fabio Fognini and Simone Bolelli withdrew.