Milos Raonic improved his head-to-head record against Rafael Nadal on Friday. The Canadian entered their quarterfinal contest at ATP Brisbane with just a 1-6 heads-up record against the Spaniard. However, Raonic, the top seed in Brisbane, is 2-6 against the Spaniard now as the defending champion at the 250-level event defeated Nadal in straight sets. Their score and all others from Friday are as follows:

  • No. 1 Milos Raonic d. No. 5 Rafael Nadal 4-6, 6-3, 6-4
  • No. 2 Stan Wawrinka d. Kyle Edmund 6-7, 6-4, 6-4
  • No. 3 Kei Nishikori d. Jordan Thompson 6-1, 6-1
  • No. 7. Grigor Dimitrov d. No. 4 Dominic Thiem 6-3, 4-6, 6-3

Three matches went three sets

The matches were generally competitive with just Australian Jordan Thompson not really able to hold his own.

The Raonic victory was an upset, however Nadal has been busy over the last several days. He won the Abu Dhabi exhibition event before making the Brisbane quarters. The Spaniard, due to his ranking, did not enjoy a bye in Brisbane's first round and he may be tired right now. He remains an interesting player to be mindful of as the start of the 2017 Australian Open nears.

Dimitrov defeating Thiem might seem like a mild upset, however that's only by seeding or ranking. Thiem's best surface is clay and deep runs on the cement generally eluded him in the last half of the 2016 season with the exception of a good run in Metz. Dimitrov appears to be getting back to stronger tennis and he will face a test in the next round for sure.

Saturday's schedule from Brisbane

The Bulgarian will face Raonic in the top half of the draw's semifinal. Meanwhile Nishikori and Wawrinka will square off in a battle of two excellent hard-court players. The victors from each match will meet in this weekend's final. Most would probably put Raonic through to that final based on his dazzling serve of late and fairly weak semifinal opponent.

Nishikori and Wawrinka is much more of a coin toss with perhaps the former holding a slight edge.

For match times from Brisbane on Saturday, Nishikori and Wawrinka will start not before 12:30pm local time. Raonic and Dimitrov will follow with a start time of not before 2pm.