Rafael Nadal beats Ricardas Berankis to reach Wimbledon third round

It was the second time in the tournament that Nadal had dropped a set following his win over Francisco Cerundolo earlier in the week as he began his quest for a 23rd Grand Slam title.

The Spaniard will likely need to improve on grass to win his third Wimbledon title, especially with the top seed and rival Novak Djokovic playing so dominantly the day before.

« Every day is a challenge, that’s the truth. All opponents are difficult, » Nadal said during his on-court interview.

« We play against the best players in the world… Every day is an opportunity to improve, and today I’m done, so it gives me the chance to continue – very happy for that. »

After Nadal won the first two sets, Berankis, ranked No. 106 in the world, fought back in the third thanks to an early serve break.

A 50-minute rain delay ensued in the fourth to allow time for the roof to close, but Nadal was already 3-0 down in the set and quickly finished the game in just over three hours once the game resumed.

The 36-year-old will face Italy’s 27th seed Lorenzo Sonego in the third round on Saturday.

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