Simona Halep plays a shot. File/ AFP
Nadal emerged triumphant that day, winning in five sets in a four-hour 48-minute epic of fluctuating fortunes that stretched out over seven hours because of constant, momentum-shifting rain interruptions.
Eight-time Wimbledon champion Roger Federer reached the last-32 of a Grand Slam for the 70th time as he disposed of British wild card Jay Clarke 6-1, 7-6 (7/3), 6-2 in the second round at Wimbledon on Thursday.
Defending champion Rafael Nadal swept past Greece’s Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-3, 6-4 to advance to his first final on clay this season at the Italian Open on Saturday. The eight-time Rome winner had been stunned by Tsitsipas, seeded eighth, in the semi-finals at the Madrid Open last weekend.
Bayern Munich dropped to sixth after Ramy Bensebaini’s injury time penalty fired Bundesliga leaders Borussia Moenchengladbach to a 2-1 win over the reigning champions on Saturday.
Rampant Liverpool beat Bournemouth 3-0 to lock down the Christmas number one spot ahead of Saturday’s Manchester derby as Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham blitzed Burnley 5-0 to climb to fifth in table.
Inter Milan were held to a goalless draw by Roma at the San Siro on Friday. Antonio Conte’s side have a two-point advantage on Juventus. The match in the San Siro had been overshadowed by a racism storm after Italian