Nadal has been troubled by Fognini in the past, crashing out of the 2015 US Open in five sets at the hands of the Italian, but quickly put aside any suggestion that he might fall victim to a similar fate.
Nadal broke Fognini in the second game, capitalising on a double-fault and a short second serve to take an early lead.
Fognini failed to produce a single break point in the first set and Nadal served to love to close out emphatic 31-minute set.
The second set proved no better for Fognini who had his serve undone immediately, countless unforced errors costing him while Nadal got the ball back into play with trademark relentlessness.
The pivotal moment in the set came in the fourth game, when Fognini finally forced two break points.
But the world No 1, show his class, forcing the Italian wide with two consecutive serves and battering the first return behind his opponent before volleying the second one into the open court.
It comprehensively broke Fognini’s spirit and back-to-back unforced errors at 30-30 in the next game handed Nadal the double break.
And with nothing left to play for and Nadal keen to get off court as soon as possible, he broke his opponent for the fourth time in the match to book a match against Grigor Dimitrov.
Source : EXPRESS