Nadal returns to Wimbledon quarterfinals for 1st time in 7 years

(180705) -- LONDON, July 5, 2018 (Xinhua) -- Rafael Nadal of Spain hits a return during the men's singles second round match against Mikhail Kukushkin of Kazakhstan at the Championship Wimbledon 2018 in London, Britain, on July 5, 2018. Rafael Nadal won 3-0. (Xinhua/Guo Qiuda)

Spain tennis great Rafael Nadal defeated Jiri Vesely of the Czech Republic 6-3, 6-3, 6-4 to to book a place in the quarterfinals of Wimbledon for the first time since 2011 when he went on to the final.

The two-time Wimbledon champion was untouchable on serve against Vesely in the first two sets and conceded service only once, in the sixth game of the third set on Monday, reports Efe.

Nadal, who has yet to drop a set in the 2018 edition, will play either Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina or Gilles Simon of France in the last eight.

The 17-time Grand Slam champion is the only left-handed player left alive in the tournament after beating Vesely and seeing Switzerland’s Roger Federer eliminate Frenchman Adrian Mannarino.

The last of Nadal’s five Wimbledon finals was in 2011 when he lost to Serbia’s Novak Djokovic.

After exiting in the second and first rounds in 2012 and 2013, the Spaniard reached the round of 16 in 2014 before succumbing to Australia’s Nick Kyrgios.

Germany’s Dustin Brown ended Nadal’s run in the second round of the 2015 edition and he withdrew from the 2016 tournament with an injury.

Last year, Nadal lost to Gilles Muller of Luxemburg in a five-set thriller in the round of 16.