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Rafael Nadal

Rafael NadalKnown best for his stunning triumph in the French Open in 2005, (and in 2006) Rafael Nadal was born in Majorca, Spain on June 3, 1986, and has been playing tennis since the age of five with his Uncle Toni, who has since coached him into the world tennis arena. In 2005, the 19-year-old rookie sensation with the massive arm strength became the youngest player in tennis history to reach the Top Ten since Andrei Medvedev in 1993.

With 31-2 on clay the season before - and 41-6 for the year - Nadal was already red hot to take the men's 2005 French Open title - and made headlines for his scheduled performance against veteran Roger Federer, following his earlier loss to the Swiss champ at the Nasdaq-100 Open.

In a stunning victory, Nadal finally triumphed over Federer in the French Open semi-final at Roland Garros, and ultimately went up against Argentine strong man, 26-year-old Mariano Puerta in the final.

The teenager battled for the men's final in a grueling 3 hour-plus match and won 6-7, 6-3, 6-1, 7-5. The first left-handed champion since Thomas Muster in 1995, Nadal is the tournament's fourth youngest champion.

In July 2005, Nadal went on to clinch his 32nd consecutive clay court win during the Mercedes Cup to break a record set by a handful of world champions, including Bjorn Borg who only held 31 consecutive wins.

In May 2006, Nadal beat Roger Federer for the Rome Masters title in a five-set match and tied Guillermo Vilas' record 53-match winning streak on clay.

Most recently, Nadal went on to break Vilas' record at the Roland Garros, where he once again defeated Roger Federer for the men's title, only later to be defeated by the Swiss champ at the 2006 Wimbledon championship.

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