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Rafael Nadal admits he found the conditions difficult in his US Open fourth-round clash with Philipp Kohlschreiber, as world number two dropped his first set of tournament.
The Spaniard, many people’s favourite for the title after an excellent run of form on hard courts, lost the first set on a tie-break to his German opponent.
Nadal fought back in typical fashion, winning the second set 6-4 and then took the second of 17 break points to also win the third 6-3.
The French Open champion, unbeaten on hard courts this year, then made light work of the fourth set, winning 6-1 to seal the victory in three hours and 12 minutes.
But Nadal admitted it was hard work on the Arthur Ashe Stadium, with the humidity level in New York measured at 91% on Monday.
The 2010 US Open champion admitted: “It was very tough conditions out there. I sweated too much tonight.”
Nadal added: “The opponent was great. He had good chances, the first set he played great. I feel lucky to be through.”
The Spaniard has avoided a meeting with five-time Flushing Meadows champion Roger Federer in the quarter-finals after a shock defeat for the Swiss ace.
Federer lost to Tommy Robredo, who had won only three sets against Federer in all their previous matches, in straight sets – going down 7-6 (7/3) 6-3 6-4.