The fifth-seeded Spaniard, with a display of powerful serving
and opportunistic returns, did not face a break point against
Fognini and put his opponent's serve under pressure throughout
the 90-minute match.
Nadal raced through the first set in 26 minutes, losing only
four points on serve while Fognini made 14 unforced errors.
The Italian came to life in the second set, including a stretch
where he erased five break points during his first two service
But at 5-5, just when it looked as if Fognini might force a
decisive third set, he double faulted and Nadal got his break
before sealing the match four points later.
Nadal, who has never who won the Miami title, will face the
winner of Friday's second semi-final between twice champion
Federer, the fourth seed, and the 12th-seeded Australian Nick
Federer made a stunning return from a six-month injury layoff to
win the Australian Open in January, and also beat Nadal in the
last 16 at Indian Wells en route to winning a record-tying fifth
(Reporting by Frank Pingue; Editing by Ken Ferris)
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