Football

No. 1 Rafael Nadal Upset by Dominic Thiem in Australian Open Quarterfinals

+ADw-p class+AD0AIg-subtitle+ACIAPg-World No. 1 Rafael Nadal attempted a comeback against Dominic Thiem, but ultimately, the 26-year-old Austrian prevailed.+ADw-/p+AD4APAAh— tml-version+AD0AIg-2+ACI –+AD4APA-figure+AD4APA-img src+AD0AIg-https://www.si.com/.image/c+AF8-fit+ACU-2Ccs+AF8-srgb+ACU-2Cfl+AF8-progressive+ACU-2Cq+AF8-auto:good+ACU-2Cw+AF8-620/MTcwMDg2MDI2Mzg2MDg5MzM3/nadal-loses-theim-australian-open.jpg+ACI height+AD0AIg-345+ACI width+AD0AIg-620+ACIAPgA8-/figure+AD4APA-p+AD4-By HOWARD FENDRICH+ADw-br+AD4-AP Tennis Writer+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) +IBQ Outplayed at his own brand of physical tennis for much of the match, Rafael Nadal finally claimed a set to try to start a comeback against Dominic Thiem.+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-Nadal marked the moment by hopping in a crouch at the baseline and vigorously pumping his right arm four times.+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-Soon, though, he was back in trouble. And eventually, his bid to tie Roger Federer+IBk-s record of 20 Grand Slam titles by winning the Australian Open was over with a quarterfinal loss Wednesday to Thiem +IBQ a younger version of Nadal himself.+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-Thiem+IBk-s 7-6 (3), 7-6 (4), 4-6, 7-6 (6) victory over the top-seeded Nadal lasted 4 hours, 10 minutes because of so many lengthy, electrifying points and put him in his fifth major semifinal.+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-It is his first somewhere other than at the French Open, the place that is Nadal+IBk-s domain.+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-Of more significance: The outcome ended Nadal+IBk-s career-best streak of making at least the semifinals at seven consecutive Grand Slam tournaments, a span during which he earned three trophies to narrow his gap with Federer.+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-The last time Nadal didn+IBk-t get to the final four at a major? Also at the Australian Open, where he also went out in the quarterfinals two years ago before finishing as the runner-up to Novak Djokovic in 2019.+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-That was Nadal+IBk-s fourth defeat in a final at Melbourne Park since he won his lone title at the place in 2009. He+IBk-s won two at Wimbledon, four at the U.S. Open and 12 at the French Open.+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-Thiem had been 0-5 against Nadal at the majors, including losses in the final at Roland Garros each of the past two years.+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-But this one was different. The defining statistic: Thiem won exactly twice as many points that featured nine or more shots, 24-12.+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-Thiem managed to hang in there with Nadal on physical baseline exchanges, trading groundstroke for groundstroke and picking the proper spots to move forward.+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-Or to describe it another way: Thiem was out-Nadal-ing Nadal, the ultimate grinder who never met a point that was too long or too grueling.+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-Now Thiem will play No. 7 Alexander Zverev on Friday for a berth in the title match.+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-Zverev reached his first major semifinal anywhere by overcoming a terrible start Wednesday and putting together a 1-6, 6-3, 6-4, 6-2 victory over three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka.+ADw-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4AXwBfAF8APA-/p+AD4APA-p+AD4-More AP Tennis: https://apnews.com/apf-Tennis and https://twitter.com/AP+AF8-Sports+ADw-/p+AD4-

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