Top Four to the fore in Japan
Defending champion Rafael Nadal fought off a spirited challenge from Colombia's Santiago Giraldo yesterday as the top four seeds including Andy Murray safely reached the semi-finals of the Japan Open.
Former World No 1 Nadal, playing his first ATP tournament since losing in the US Open final last month, needed a tie-break to set him up for a 7-6 (8/6), 6-3 win.
On Saturday Nadal will take on American No 1 Mardy Fish after the fourth seed defeated Bernard Tomic of Australia 6-7 (5/7), 6-4, 6-1. In the other semi-final, Murray will bid to win back-to-back tourneys after his win in Thailand, as he takes on David Ferrer.