Holder Roger Federer produced an hour of sublime quality to crush Rafa Nadal 6-3, 6-0 at the ATP World Tour Finals on Tuesday and clinch a place in the last four with a match to spare.
The 17,500-capacity crowd crammed into the O2 would have been expecting something longer from the eagerly anticipated 26th clash of the great rivals but the 60 minutes of magic Federer served up will live long in their memories.
Blazing winners to all corners of the court, the Swiss 16-times grand slam champion was simply unstoppable as he recorded his most emphatic victory against the man who had beaten him in 17 of their previous encounters.
"This win ranks high because it's against my biggest rival, probably," Federer, whose game looked sharper than ever despite him turning 30, said.
"It was a great match for me from start to finish. I've felt the power of Rafa in the past, so this is a great match for me, a nice win."
World No. 2 Nadal now faces a win or bust clash with Jo-Wilfried Tsonga on Thursday in his final Group B match after the dangerous Frenchman produced fireworks of his own to beat American Mardy Fish 7-6, 6-1 and stay in contention.
"It's not the moment to say goodbye. If I win my next match I will be in the semi-finals," Nadal said. "I just have to accept today he played too good for me."