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Rafael Nadal Loses In Australian Open

We won't have a quasi Grand Slam winner. Rafael Nadal lost to seventh seed David Ferrer in the quarterfinals of the 2011 Australian Open. Nadal went down in straight sets, losing 6-4, 6-2, 6-3. 

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Nadal was nursing a hamstring injury essentially from the get-go. In the first set, Nadal took an injury time out and returned with his thigh taped. Nadal was unable to play at the high level we're accustomed to seeing him play at - whether it's because of the injury or just having a bad day - and thus, Nadal fell in straight sets.

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Had Nadal won and went on to win the Australian Open, there would have likely been debate on whether what he did constitutes as a legitimate Grand Slam. Nadal won last year's French Open, Wimbledon and US Open. If he won this year's Australian Open, he'd have won all four in succession - just not in the same year. It wouldn't count to me as winning a legitimate Grand Slam, but it'd still have been impressive nonetheless.

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Roger Federer is now the favorite to win the Australian Open. Federer will take on third seeded Novak Djokovic in the semi-finals. 

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Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.