Nadal, Sharapova eye French Open semi-finals

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PARIS: Rafael Nadal sets his sights on a 27th Grand Slam semi-final when he faces Diego Schwartzman of Argentina in the French Open quarter-finals on Wednesday while Marin Cilic tackles Juan Martin del Potro in a battle of former US Open champions.

In the women’s last-eight, Maria Sharapova faces fellow former Paris champion Garbine Muguruza.

Top seed Simona Halep, twice a runner-up, takes on two-time major winner Angelique Kerber.

Nadal heads into his semi-final clash still on course for an incredible 11th French Open title, having not even dropped a set at Roland Garros since losing to Novak Djokovic in the 2015 quarter-finals.

The world number one has won all five of his meetings with 11th seed Schwartzman. The Argentinian said that the story of David and Goliath inspired him in a remarkable comeback from two sets down against Kevin Anderson, who is 13 inches taller than him, in the last 16.

But he will need an even more Herculean effort to get past Nadal, although he did take a set off the great Spaniard when they met in the Australian Open fourth round earlier this year.

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