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Posted 02-20-2013 at 09:25 AM by Philip Oliver
Rafael Nadal hit out at the ATP over the state of the balls, despite booking his place in the Brazil Open quarter-finals with a comfortable victory over home hope Joao Souza.

The Spaniard, who made his comeback from injury and illness last week, needed only 79 minutes and a break of serve in each set to get past his Brazilian opponent, ranked 140th in the world.

The 6-3 6-4 win eased concerns over Nadal's fitness. The 26-year-old took the decision to pull out of a doubles...
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Posted 02-20-2013 at 09:24 AM by Philip Oliver
Richard Gasquet’s superb start to the 2013 season came to an abrupt end last week as the French world number 10 crashed out of the Rotterdam World Tennis 6-4 6-4 to Marcos Baghdatis.

Up against the unseeded Cypriot, Gasquet struggled to control his returns and failed convert any of three break points across the two sets. He won just 29% of his return points, while winning just 66% of his first serves compared to Baghdatis’ 78%.

He looked tired on the Rotterdam court...
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Posted 02-13-2013 at 10:51 AM by Philip Oliver
Rafael Nadal almost secured a successful comeback from injury last week after the 11-time Grand Slam champion eased into the final of the Vina del Mar tournament in Chile, but lost at the last hurdle to give him a major reality check.

Nadal, who was playing is first competitive tournament in eight months, lost 6-7 7-6 6-4 to Horacio Zeballos in a gruelling match where serves dominated. The Spaniard simply couldn’t get hold of his opponent’s serves at the back of the clay court and...
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Posted 02-11-2013 at 05:19 PM by Philip Oliver
Rafael Nadal reflected on a positive week despite his shock defeat in the final of the Chile Open.

The Spaniard made his long-awaited comeback from a serious knee injury in South America last week and proved a big hit with the locals on his way to the final. He fell just short of a morale-boosting title success, however, losing to Horacio Zeballos in three sets.

It was Nadal's first tournament appearance since Wimbledon last June, in which time he has missed a number...
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Posted 02-05-2013 at 08:27 AM by Philip Oliver
Rafael Nadal is not expecting an immediate return to his best form when he makes his long-awaited comeback at the Chile Open this week.

The 11-time Grand Slam champion has not featured since suffering a serious knee injury at Wimbledon in June. He was set to return in Abu Dhabi in December but a stomach virus delayed his return and forced him to pull out of the Australian Open.

The Spaniard has now overcome the problem and will play for the first time in eight months...
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