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Nadal steals Federer's thunder in 2008

December 29, 2008

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This was meant to be the year when Roger Federer would equal, if not break, Pete Sampras's record of 14 Grand Slam titles.

Instead, it was a season in which Rafael Nadal finally spread his tentacles beyond Roland Garros. The Spaniard first grabbed Federer's Wimbledon crown, then snatched Olympic gold in Beijing.

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    That failed to satisfy Nadal's hunger and he went on to end Federer's record 237-week reign as world number one just hours after the Olympic medal had been placed around his neck.

    "Almost a perfect season, no?" quipped the 22-year-old Nadal, who took his Grand Slam tally to five.

    Photographs and Text: Reuters

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