Rafael Nadal slips after record set right
Nadal could not maintain his form and went down 7-5 6-3 to the Austrian world number seven
Rafael Nadal is all set to return to Dominic Thiem in Madrid yesterday. Pic/AFP
Rafael Nadal lost his long unbeaten streak on clay and his world number one ranking after a shock defeat to Dominic Thiem in the Madrid Open quarter-finals. The Spaniard had surpassed John McEnroe's record for 50 straight-set wins on a single surface when he eased through to the last eight of the event on Thursday.
But Nadal could not maintain his form and went down 7-5 6-3 to the Austrian world number seven, who broke his opponent's serve five times in the two-hour match. As a result of Nadal''s defeat, Roger Federer, who is sitting out the clay-court season, will return to world number one on Monday, but Nadal could regain top spot with a win in Rome.
On Thursday, Nadal broke McEnroe's after beating Argentina's Diego Schwartzman 6-3, 6-4 on the clay to take his winning set streak to 50 and eclipse McEnroe's total which the American achieved on carpet in 1984.
When asked about his latest record-breaking achievement on his favourite surface then, the King of Clay had said that he did not give much importance to it. "When my career is over, these are things that are going to be there forever," They are big records. It's difficult to be able to win 50 sets in a row," Nadal said.
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