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Rafael Nadal

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Biography

Rafael Nadal Parera (IPA: ) (born June 3, 1986, in Manacor, Mallorca) is a Spanish professional tennis player. As of July 2005, he is ranked No. 2 in the world. He is a three-time Grand Slam champion, having won three consecutive French Open singles titles (2005-07), and has twice been a runner-up at Wimbledon (2006-07). Nadal is undefeated in his career at the French Open, having won all 21 matches he has played en route to his three championships. He also holds the longest winning streak among male players on a single surface in the open era. From April 2005 to May 2007, he won a record 81 consecutive clay court matches, before being defeated by World Number One Roger Federer in the 2007 Hamburg Masters final.

Nadal broke Argentinian Guillermo Vilas's 29-year record of 53 consecutive clay court match victories after defeating Robin Soderling in the first round of the 2006 French Open. Following the victory, Nadal was presented with a trophy containing the cross section of the construction of a clay court. Vilas was on hand for the ceremony, although Vilas has refused to acknowledge Nadal's feat as more impressive than his own (which was accomplished in a single season).

Rafa started 2007 by reaching the semifinals of the Chennai Open in India, where he lost to Xavier Malisse 6-4, 7-6. At his next tournament in Sydney, Australia, Nadal retired from his first match against Chris Guccione with a groin injury. At the Australian Open, Nadal defeated Andy Murray 6-7(3), 6-4, 4-6, 6-3, 6-1 to reach the quarterfinals, where he lost to Fernando González 6-2, 6-4, 6-3.

In Wimbledon, Nadal reached his second final in a row, having been beaten by Federer in the previous year's final. Nadal's road to the final proved difficult, after having nearly been eliminated both in the third and fourth round in tough five-set matches. Numerous rain delays also kept him on the court for seven straight days. In the quarterfinals, Nadal defeated Tomáš Berdych in straight sets, and was awarded victory in his semifinal when fourth seed Novak Đoković retired injured. However, he was defeated 7-6(7), 4-6, 7-6(3), 2-6, 6-2 in the final by Federer, marking the Swiss' fifth straight triumph at the event. While leading 4-1 in the fourth set, Nadal had to take some time out to have an ailing knee taped, and although he exhibited no apparent ill effects, the direction of the match then turned in Federer's favor. Nadal failed to convert four break point chances in the fifth set.

At the clay-court tournament in Stuttgart, his first tournament since Wimbledon, Nadal defeated comeback player Stanislas Wawrinka in the final to win his second title there in three years (he did not participate in 2006). It was his 23rd title.

Overall, Nadal is an aggressive counterpuncher, forcing his opponents to make errors with his powerful topspin, his speed, and his athleticism.

Grand Slam Win-Loss0-03-23-213-317-220-3N/A56-12Indian Wells MastersAA3RASFW1 / 312-2Miami MastersAA4RF2RQF0 / 49-4Monte Carlo MastersA3RAWWW3 / 419-1Rome MastersAAAWWW3 / 317-0Hamburg MastersA3RAAAF0 / 26-2Canada MastersAA1RW3RSF1 / 411-3Cincinnati MastersAA1R1RQF2R0 / 43-4Madrid MastersA1R2RWQF



 


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