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Rafael Nadal makes tennis history

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By Catholic Online
9/14/2010 (9 years ago)
Catholic Online (https://www.catholic.org)

Spaniard wins his first U.S. Open championship

Flying high on victory, Spaniard Rafael Nadal tried to take a bite of the U.S. Open trophy. It was the latest in a long string of victories for the tennis champion.

Spanish tennis champ Rafael Nadal always pleases sports photographers with his trademark 'biting' of the trophy.

Spanish tennis champ Rafael Nadal always pleases sports photographers with his trademark "biting" of the trophy.

Highlights

By Catholic Online
Catholic Online (https://www.catholic.org)
9/14/2010 (9 years ago)

Published in Sports


P>LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - In a grueling match that lasted more the three hours, that had been delayed by one day and then almost another two hours because of rain, Nadal won his first U.S. Open championship with a 6-4, 5-7, 6-4, 6-2 victory over third-seeded Novak Djokovic of Serbia.

It was Nadal's ninth major title. At the age of 24 years, 101 days, he became the third-youngest man in the Open era of tennis to have won at least one Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon and U.S. Open. Nadal is also only one of seven men to have earned at least one of each major title.

Presented with the cup, Nadal smiled and took a camera-friendly shot of him comically taking a bite out of his trophy.

"For the first time in my career I played a very, very good match in this tournament," Nadal said. "I worked a lot all my life to be here, but I never imagined I would have all four Grand Slams."

Nadal displayed strong athletic acument throughout the tournament, but even more so Monday night when he punched, punched, punched at Djokovic, muscling a crosscourt passing shot past the diving Serbian or leveling a backhand accompanied by a grunt and a grin.

In a show of good sportsmanship, Djokovic could only applaud his opponent, along with fans in Arthur Ashe Stadium and those watching on television who outlasted a nearly two-hour rain delay in the second set that pushed the match off CBS and onto ESPN2.

In that ending game Djokovic got one final chance to smile when he scored a point on a drop shot that touched the top of the net then trickled over. It was about the only way the hard-charging Nadal wouldn't have reached the ball.

Nadal is the first left-handed player to win the U.S. Open since John McEnroe won in 1984, and he is the first Spanish champion since Manuel Orantes won in 1975.

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