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Spanish tennis player Rafael Nadal celebrates his victory over South Korean tennis player Hyeon Chung during the ATP Barcelona Open "Conde de Godo" tennis tournament in Barcelona on April 28, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Josep LAGO (Photo credit should read JOSEP LAGO/AFP/Getty Images)

Nadal Two Matches Away from 10th Barcelona Title

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) -- Defending champion Rafael Nadal advanced to the Barcelona Open semifinals on Friday, easing past Hyeon Chung of South Korea 7-6 (1), 6-2.

Nadal, seeking his 10th Barcelona title, struggled in the first set but took control of the match after winning the tiebreaker. He broke Chung to start the second set and cruised to his second straight semifinal appearance.

Nadal will play Horacio Zeballos of Argentina.

Earlier on Friday, Murray fought hard to avenge Monte Carlo loss to Albert Ramos-Vinolas with a 2-6, 6-4, 7-6 (4) win.

Ramos-Vinolas had chances to beat Murray for the second straight time, but the top-ranked British player controlled the decisive points to close out the match in three hours.

The 19th-ranked Ramos-Vinolas eliminated Murray in the third round at the Monte Carlo Masters last week before eventually losing to Nadal in the final.

"It was very similar to the match in Monte Carlo, except in that match I was the one who had chances, and today he had more chances to win," Murray said. "I feel like I was a little more aggressive at the end of the second and third sets and then played a good tiebreak."

Murray will play fourth-seeded Dominic Thiem of Austria, who defeated lucky loser Yuichi Sugita of Japan 6-1, 6-2. Thiem was broken in the beginning of both sets but powered his way to victory against Sugita, who was coming off wins against Tommy Robredo, Richard Gasquet, and Pablo Carreno Busta.

"I knew he was in great shape after beating three great players before me," Thiem said. "My game plan was to take him out of his comfort zone. I sliced a lot and tried to play with high spin."

Thiem won the Rio de Janeiro title this year.

Watch Barcelona Open matches LIVE on Tennis Channel

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