Nadal begins title defence with a win

Updated: April 26, 2012

Rafael Nadal began his title defence at the Barcelona Open on Wednesday with a 6-1, 6-2 defeat of compatriot Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, who had defeated the king of clay two years ago in Thailand.

Top seed Nadal, champion at the Real Club de Tenis in six of the last seven editions (he missed 2010 with knee trouble) claimed his 30th match victory in a row at his home event.

South Africa’s Kevin Anderson, the tournament’s 13th seed, secured a tight victory over Argentine qualifier Federico Delbonis 7-6 (5), 7-6.

David Ferrer. The third seed, who has lost three Barcelona finals to Nadal, crushed Serbian wild card Filip Krajinovic 6-0, 6-3.

Japan’s Kei Nishikori demonstrated his growing confidence on the clay with a battling 6-3, 4-6, 6-0 defeat of Kazakhstan’s Mikhail Kukushkin.

Canadian Milos Raonic, the number 11, raced through the second set to beat Igor Andreev 6-4, 6-1.