Rafael Nadal of Spain hits a return to Paolo Lorenzi of Italy during the first round of the China Open tennis tournament in Beijing on October 4, 2016. / AFP / NICOLAS ASFOURI
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Rafael Nadal barreled through his opening match of the China Open Tuesday as he seeks to redeem his injury-blighted season with a strong run in Beijing.Nadal dropped just two games to 39th-ranked Italian Paolo Lorenzi, beating him 6-1, 6-1 to reach the round of 16 .Fourteen-time Grand Slam champion Nadal is approaching the end of his second consecutive season without a Slam title since he won his first aged 19 at Roland Garros in 2005 .Nadal is currently eighth on the leaderboard for the London ATP Finals – which features the year's top eight players – and needs to pick up some points in Beijing in order to ensure his qualification.Murray is also targeting a strong Beijing run, which could put him in striking distance of dethroning world No. 1 Novak Djokovic.
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