A determined Andy Murray continued his strong claycourt form by booking a place in the semi-finals of the Madrid Open with a 6-4, 7-5 victory over Milos Raonic.

The Scot remained on course to face Rafa Nadal in the final. Nadal is seeking a third straight title after sweeping past Grigor Dimitrov 6-3, 6-4.

Murray will now face fourth seed Kei Nishikori, who beat David Ferrer 6-4, 6-2 while Nadal plays Tomas Berdych, who outlasted John Isner 3-6, 7-6, 7-6.

Nadal, seeded third, came into the tournament with plenty of doubt over his form but in front of his home support he has not yet dropped a set in his quest for a fifth Madrid crown.

He decided to return to his old racket design after trying out a new style in the last two tournaments, and it appears to be working for him.

After comfortably enjoying the upper hand in the second set, Nadal told reporters, "This was a good win. I knew that I needed to play better and I think in the first set I played at quite a high level."

Meanwhile, Murray's preparation for the claycourt season in Barcelona is paying dividends.

The world number three claimed his first ever claycourt title in Munich earlier this month and now has swept past his first top 10 opponent this year on the surface.

"I feel like I've been moving well," Murray told reporters. "I feel healthy this year, I'm not worrying about my back or worrying about things when I am put in difficult positions on court. That obviously gives me a bit more confidence."

Source: Reuters