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US Open (tennis)

‘I needed something that was not there’: Rafa Nadal vows to fight on after US Open shock

Spaniard vows to fight on and revive his faltering career after shock loss to Lucas Pouille condemns him to his worst grand slam season since 2004

PUBLISHED : Monday, 05 September, 2016, 9:46am
UPDATED : Monday, 05 September, 2016, 9:46am

Rafael Nadal vowed to fight on and revive his faltering career after a shock US Open fourth round loss to Lucas Pouille condemned him to his worst grand slam season since 2004.

The 30-year-old Spaniard, the winner of 14 majors including two in New York, suffered a 6-1, 2-6, 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (8-6) defeat to world number 25 Pouille in a four-hour last-16 epic.

Defeat means that 2016 will be the first year since 2004 that Nadal has not made a quarter-final of a Slam after a first round exit in Australia was followed by an enforced withdrawal from the French Open after the third round due to a wrist injury.

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The same injury sidelined him from Wimbledon.

“I am close to being 100 per cent again and I believe I can have a couple of more good years,” said Nadal whose most recent grand slam title came with his ninth French Open in 2014.

His best runs since have been two quarter-final spots at the 2015 Australian and French Opens.

“I fought to the end today but I needed something that was not there. I will keep working to try and find it.

“I will keep working hard and I am motivated to do that.”