MIAMI (Reuters) - A struggling Rafa Nadal crashed out of the Miami Open in the third round on Sunday, losing 6-4 2-6 6-3 to fellow Spaniard Fernando Verdasco.
Nadal had only lost once in 14 previous meetings with the 31-year-old Verdasco, who is ranked 34th in the world.
Nadal struggled throughout the match which turned decisively in Verdasco’s direction when he broke to go 3-1 up in the third set.
In another upset, seventh seed Stan Wawrinka lost 7-6(4) 7-6(5) to 28th seeded Frenchman Adrian Mannarino.
Britain’s Andy Murray moved into the last 16 at the Miami Open after beating Colombia’s Santiago Giraldo 6-3 6-4 to move him within one win of 500 victories on the ATP Tour.
Murray would become just the ninth active player and only the 46th man in the open era to achieve the milestone should he defeat South African Kevin Anderson in the next round at Key Biscayne.
The Scot would also be the first British player to reach 500 wins in the open era. “It’s nice, because when you see, the list of the players that have won that many matches, there aren’t loads,” said Murray.
“I obviously want to try and win more, and hopefully still have quite a few years ahead of me left to add to that number. But it’s a lot of wins. It’s not easy these days to win that many matches, so that’s a good sign.”
Murray’s latest win, in bright sunshine on stadium court, was a relatively straightforward matter although Giraldo’s free swinging approach in the second set brought the contest alive a bit.
Giraldo battled back from 5-1 down before Murray wrapped up the win in 84 minutes.
Reporting by Simon Evans, editing by Gene Cherry