US Open: Rafael Nadal reaches the last 16
NEW YORK: Rafael Nadal crossed to United States Open fourth round with a business victory 6-3 6-4 6-2 over Chung hyeon on Saturday.
The three-time champion took control of the game when he broke South Korea's service in the first set to take a 4-2 lead and never looked back on a sun-soaked court at Arthur Ashe Stadium.
The next step for Nadal is a final clash of 16 with the 2014 champion Marin Cilic, who won the fight with John Isner on the Tribune court.
Nadal had been on the court for just over two hours before his third round game after defeating John Millman in straight sets on Tuesday before moving on to the third round when Thanasi Kokkinakis retired.
The second Spanish seed, who has been hampered by problematic knees throughout his career, did not use his usual leg strap during the game.
The tape doesn't work anymore, he said with a smile during his interview on the court.
I am happy to play on hard courts and I am trying to play a little more aggressive.
Nadal will be cut off when he meets Cilic on Monday, who defeated Isner 7-5 3-6 7-6 (6) 6-4.
Nadal said the key was to take down an opponent like Cilic was maintaining the service and taking full advantage of his chances of receiving.
The possibilities are not many, so you must be prepared to expect a very difficult one, he told reporters.
I need to be focused with my service, as always. I need to be ready to accept the challenge that competition brings on days like these.
And I hope to be ready to play my highest level, because that's what I'm going to need.