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Nadal continues serene progress as Raonic shocks Murray

updated 2:34 PM EDT, Fri April 27, 2012
World No. 4 Andy Murray was dumped out of the Barcelona Open by 21-year-old Canadian Milos Raonic
World No. 4 Andy Murray was dumped out of the Barcelona Open by 21-year-old Canadian Milos Raonic
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • World No. 2 Rafael Nadal moves into the semifinals of the Barcelona Open
  • Spaniard beats Serbia's No. 5 seed Janko Tipsarevic in just 83 minutes
  • Britain's Andy Murray knocked out by big-serving Canadian Milos Raonic
  • Victoria Azarenka survives scare to reach semifinals of Stuttgart tournament

(CNN) -- World no. 2 Rafael Nadal continued his serene progress at the Barcelona Open after defeating No. 5 seed Janko Tipsarevic 6-2 6-2.

The Spaniard hasn't been beaten at the tournament since 2003 and showed no signs of slipping up against the Serbian, who he dismissed in 83 minutes.

He has lifted the trophy on his past six appearances and took his event record to 33 wins and just one loss.

Nadal will now face fellow Spaniard Fernando Verdasco in the semis after the No. 7 seed's quarterfinal was cut short due an injury to his opponent Kei Nishikori, of Japan.

But there was a shock in one of the other last eight clashes as Britain's Andy Murray was dumped out of the tournament by big-serving Canadian Milos Raonic.

Murray, the world No. 4, who also made an early exit at last week's Monte Carlo Masters, struggled to find any rhythm against the 21-year-old, and slumped to a 6-4 7-6 defeat -- his sixth reverse of the season.

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Victoria Azarenka targets 2012 success

"It's very, very difficult and a big plus in confidence for me," Raonic told the ATP Tour's official website.

"Clay's not his best surface, but he consistently does well on it. Last year he reached the semi-finals at the French Open, Monte-Carlo and Rome, so he can play really well on it. For me, it was a big win, regardless of the surface."

Ranoic only lost his serve once in the match and added: "I was playing really well up till that point. He played really well the next game at 5-5.

"I didn't really have any opportunities and I was fortunate that I served well again in the next game then played a good tie-break."

Raonic will now face a semifinal clash with David Ferrer, after the Spaniard beat compatriot Feliciano Lopez, the No. 7 seed, 6-7 7-6 6-3 in a match that lasted nearly three hours.

In Stuttgart, women's world No. 1 Victoria Azarenka survived a scare as she fought off a stiff challenge from wild card Mona Barthel to reach the final four.

The Belarusian eventually triumphed 6-4 6-7 7-5 over the 21-year-old German, who recorded 13 aces in the match.

"She keeps producing some great tennis and she showed again today why she is a tough one to beat," Azarenka told reporters.

"Her serve is definitely up there with the best, after more than two-and-a-half hours she was still blasting down aces. I have been saying for a while she is one to watch."

Azarenka will now face Poland's Agnieszka Radwanska in the last four, after she beat French Open champion Li Na 3-6 6-2 6-3.

Australia's Samantha Stosur faces Maria Sharapova, from Russia later on Friday, with the winner playing either Germany's Angelique Kerber or Czech Petra Kvitova in the other semi.

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