US Open:Nadal makes earliest exit in a decade

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Sep6: At about 11 o’clock New York time on Friday night, a visible portion of the crowd at the Arthur Ashe Stadium leaked out of exit points. The last match of the evening session, Rafael Nadal versus Fabio Fognini, hadn’t yet concluded, but the fight had long been extinguished. Nadal, two sets to zilch up, had just broken the Italian’s serve and spirit early in the third. Holding serve was all that remained to seal a fourth round spot.

But very next game, Nadal was broken. On love. And about three hours later, at exactly 2 am New York time on Saturday morning, the Spaniard’s universe had flipped upside down. That soaked black T-shirt had given way to a white and dry one. His smile had turned into a scowl.

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