WIMBLEDON
Wimbledon, England
July 2, 2008
Awesome Nadal Ends Murray Wimbledon Hopes

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Rafael NadalATP World No. 2 Rafael Nadal (pictured) produced an awesome display of tennis to end British hopes at Wimbledon by defeating Scottish No. 12 seed Andy Murray 6-3, 6-2, 6-4 on Wednesday evening at the All England Club.

Nadal now extends his winning streak to 22 matches, having won three consecutive titles at Masters Series Hamburg, Roland Garros and Queen's Club prior to arriving at Wimbledon.

The Spaniard is through to his third successive semifinal at Wimbledon and has gone on to finish runner-up to Roger Federer in the final the past two years. The pair are on course to meet again in the final, with Federer featuring in the semifinal in the top half of the draw.

 

Wednesday: Federer Crushes Ancic to Reach Semifinal

Nadal was dominant throughout the 1 hr., 55 min., match, not allowing Murray any break point chances and only dropping 10 points on serve in the encounter. The 22-year-old broke through in the eighth game of the first set, converting on one of 10 break point chances he held in total as Murray fired an overhead long. Another confident and comfortable service game from Nadal, in which he continued to expose errors on Murray's forehand side, brought to an end the first set 6-3.

Murray was under pressure immediately in the second set and surrendered his serve to love in the third game, a double fault creeping in to hand Nadal the 2-1 lead. The left-hander moved further ahead with a second break in the seventh game and closed out the set with some fine hitting on his forehand side.

Watch excerpts of Nadal's post-match media conference

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Murray was able to hold Nadal off early in the third set, denying him two break point chances at 2-2. However, Nadal continued to chip away at Murray, whose resistance began to crumble, and he broke through in the seventh game before going on to wrap up his fourth straight victory over the Scot.

"Today was a special match, play against big player like Andy," said Nadal. "There's a big motivation as well, for me be in the semifinals is a goal, too. I played very aggressive all the time, no? When I have little bit time, when I don't have time, too, I try to hit the ball every time close to the lines. Well, is one of my best days here, no?"

"I think I am doing a lot of things better than last year. Slice better. The position on court, in my opinion, I felt like this is better. Playing more aggressive with the forehand all the time, and the backhand is feeling well, too, no?"

The 21-year-old Murray (pictured right) was bidding to reach his first Grand Slam semifinal. The Dunblane native, who missed The Championships last year with a wrist injury, reached his first Wimbledon quarterfinal after fighting back from two-sets down against No. 8 seed Richard Gasquet in the fourth round.

Andy Murrayβ€œHe played so much better than me,” confessed Murray. β€œI didn't feel like I played my best, which is a bit disappointing. But, regardless, he was playing too well probably for me. His forehand was ridiculous. He's hitting the ball so close to the line, so hard, that it was difficult for me to get into a rhythm. I felt rushed on every point. It's amazing how fast he moves his arm and how much control he has over it. He deserved to win.”

Nadal is looking to become the first player since Lleyton Hewitt in 2002 to win both the Queen's Club and Wimbledon titles in the same year, and the third player in the Open Era to win back-to-back Roland Garros and Wimbledon titles.

The Manacor resident will have to wait until Thursday to learn who his semifinal opponent will be. The quarterfinal match between Rainer Schuettler and Arnaud Clement was suspended due to bad light with the match tied at one set all 6-3, 5-7.

 

Wimbledon Profile | Official Website | Buy Tickets | TV Schedule

Monday: Murray Completes Comeback; Nadal Cruises into QF
Monday: Federer Inches Towards Final; Faces Ancic Next

Saturday: Nadal Extends Winning Streak
Saturday: Gasquet Defeats Countryman; Murray Advances
Friday: Ancic, Safin Come Through Late Evening Thrillers
Friday: Federer Sets Up Hewitt Clash; Verdasco Advances
Thursday: Tipsarevic Stuns Roddick on Bad Day for Americans
Thursday: Nadal Survives Scare; Murray Thrilles Home Crowd
Wednesday: Federer Produces Centre Court Masterclass
Wednesday: Vintage Safin Ends Djokovic's Challenge
Tuesday: Roddick, Blake, Murray Reach Second Round
Tuesday: Nadal Begins Quest for Historic Double
Tuesday: Davydenko Upset; Gasquet, Mathieu Impress
Monday: Djokovic Makes Winning Start; Nalbandian Falls
Monday: Federer Begins Title Defense in Style
Bjorkman Announces Pending Retirement
Wimbledon Tournament Preview


 



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