LONDON (Reuters) – Two-times championRafaelNadalcrashed out in the second round ofWimbledonon Thursday after being out-muscled and out-thought in four sets by an inspiredDustin Brownof Germany.
The Spaniard, who has slipped down the sport’s pecking order and was seeded 10 after a year ofinjuryand below-par performances, fell 7-5 3-6 6-4 6-4 as Brown, ranked 102 in the world, unleashed a barrage of thunderous serves and ground strokes, mixed with clever drop shots.
Brown, who had beatenNadalin the pair’s only other meeting, looked to rush the Spaniard from the start, blasting winners at every opportunity and squeezingNadalat the net to cut off his options in an unorthodox style that hadthe Wimbledoncrowd in raptures.
Qualifier Brown, who sealed victory with a thumping ace, heads into the third round atWimbledonfor the second time, equaling his best Grand Slam performance.
Since finishing runner-up to Novak Djokovic in the 2011 final, Spanish former world number oneNadalhas now failed to advance past the last 16 of the grasscourt major as he lost to a qualifier for the first time in any grand slam.