Rafael Nadal has continued his remarkable winning streak on clay in 2017, although not in the manner he would have expected after Nicolas Almagro was forced to retire.
The world No.4 extended his successful run on his favoured surface to a stunning 16 matches as he chases his fourth title of the season at the Italian Open.
After winning the Madrid Open on Sunday, Nadal returned to action in the second round of the Rome Masters but was on court for less than 25 minutes as his opponent had to throw in the towel.
At 3-0 down in the first set Almagro hit an incredibly forehand winner against his compatriot but immediately reached down to hold his left knee.
He appeared to jar his knee slightly upon landing and the problem forced him out of the contest.
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Almagro had it strapped up on the showpiece court before leaving the arena and he will now be a doubt for the French Open.
While Nadal would not have wanted to win the match in this way, he will no doubt be grateful to get some rest ahead of his next contest after a hectic recent schedule.
The 14-time Grand Slam champion will face either Jack Sock or Jiri Vesely in the next round.