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TENNIS

Nadal, Ferrer reach semis; Murray ousted in Barcelona

Spanish favorites Rafael Nadal and David Ferrer moved into the semifinals, while world No. 4 Andy Murray was a quarterfinal upset victim Friday at the $2.135 million Barcelona Open.

The top-seeded former No. 1 Nadal crushed fifth-seeded Serb Janko Tipsarevic 6-2, 6-2 in 1 hour, 23 minutes, as the reigning French Open champ and Australian Open, U.S. Open and Wimbledon runner-up is seeking a second straight and seventh Barcelona title in the last eight years.

Nadal, who upset current No. 1 Novak Djokovic in last week's final at the Monte Carlo Masters to capture a record 20th Masters championship, topped Ferrer in last year's all-Spanish finale and also bested Ferrer in back-to- back finals here in 2008 and 2009.

Up next for Nadal will be ninth-seeded fellow Spanish southpaw Fernando Verdasco, who was leading eighth-seeded Kei Nishikori 4-2 in the first set of their quarterfinal when the promising Japanese retired with an abdominal injury.

Verdasco captured this Barcelona event in 2010, but he's a dismal 0-12 lifetime against his countrymate Nadal.

Meanwhile, rising Canadian slugger Milos Raonic fired 14 aces and stunned the second-seeded Murray 6-4, 7-6 (7-3) on the red clay at the Real Club de Tenis Barcelona, where Raonic trains year-round. It marked Raonic's first-ever win over a top-four player.

The 21-year-old Raonic has already reached three finals this year, including titles in India and San Jose.

A third-seeded Ferrer barely setup a semifinal date with Raonic by saving three match points and outlasting lefthanded seventh-seeded fellow Spaniard Feliciano Lopez 6-7 (4-7), 7-6 (9-7), 6-3.

Ferrer, who's trying to reach his fourth final here in five years, is a perfect 3-0 lifetime versus his next opponent, Raonic.

The 2012 Barcelona titlist will claim $398,000.