Rafael Nadal

Rio de Janeiro, Aug 10 (IANS) Spanish great Rafael Nadal beat Italy’s Andreas Seppi 6-3, 6-3 to advance to the round of 16 in the Rio 2016 Olympic tennis tournament.

His win followed losses earlier on Tuesday by compatriots David Ferrer, Carla Suarez and GarbiAe Muguruza that left Nadal — the gold medalist at the 2012 London Games — as Spain’s only option for a medal in singles play, reports Efe.

The Olympics mark Nadal’s return to competition after a two-month hiatus due a wrist injured that forced him to withdraw from the French Open.

World No. 5 Nadal jumped out to a 3-0 lead over the 71st-ranked Italian, who hasn’t won a tournament since 2012, and rolled to a fairly easy victory.

Rafa’s next opponent will be Gilles Simon of France, who beat Japan’s Yuichi Sugita 7-6 (3), 6-2.

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