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Nadal's upset and more: the best of Day One

Steve Darcis soaks up the applause on No.1 Court following his remarkable straight sets victory over World no.5 Rafael Nadal.
by Nicholas McCarvel
Monday 24 June 2013

Wimbledon.com picks out the things that caught our eye on the first day of The Championships 2013...

Match of the Day: Steve Darcis def. [5] Rafael Nadal 7-6(5), 7-6(8), 6-4
Back came Rafael Nadal to Wimbledon after his shock loss to Lukas Rosol a year ago, and out he went even faster this time, losing to Steve Darcis in the opening round of a major for the first time in his career. It was a stunning display from Darcis, the world No.135 who had won just one other match in his career at the All England Club. But the Belgian journeyman delivered the goods at age 29 by scurrying, slicing and playing a defensive brand of tennis that capitalised on what appeared to be a hobbled state for the world No.5. Nadal becomes the first Roland Garros title holder to go down in the opening round of Wimbledon since Gustavo Kuerten did so in 1997. A Darcis-Roger Federer quarterfinal, anyone? Hey, stranger things have happened...

Honorary Match of the Day: Lleyton Hewitt def. [11] Stanislas Wawrinka 6-4, 7-5, 6-3
Let's party like it's 2002, shall we? Hewitt did just that on No.1 Court following Nadal's eye-popping exit, coming out firing against Wawrinka, who had made an impressive run to the Roland Garros quarter-finals a few weeks ago. The 2002 Wimbledon champion was his enthusiastic and impassioned best, fist pumping and belting out "Come ons!" throughout the three-set haul as a bevy of Australian fans dressed in the country's green and yellow spurred him on. The 32-year-old gets an equally spirited Dustin Brown - he of dreadlock fame - in round two.

Upset of the Day: Monica Puig def. [5] Sara Errani 6-3, 6-2
She calls it "Pica power," and whatever it is, it must work. The 19-year-old from Puerto Rico swears by the "pica power" mantra - which she describes as the grinding down of a stone in her country - and that's just what the world No.65 did Monday against the world No.5 Errani, taking her down on Court 18 in a massive upset. Errani has never been a grass-court specialist, but look for Caroline Wozniacki - who is in that part of the draw - to take advantage of Errani's absence. And a tweet of congratulations from pop singer Ricky Martin to his fellow Puerto Rican? Can't get much better than that.  

Quote of the Day: Nadal on his loss
"This is a sport of victories, not a sport of losses. Nobody remembers the losses. I don't want to remember the losses... That's the positive and negative about this sport. It's tough losing in the first round but the tour continues, life continues." 

Tweet of the Day: Tsonga Twitter mirror

Stat of the day
Darcis, ranked No.135 in the world, is the lowest-ranked player to beat Nadal since world No.690 Joachim Johansson (a former top 40 member) beat Rafa in Stockholm in 2006

'Did You Just See?' of the Day
The dignitaries in the Royal Box on Centre Court are always countless, and Monday was no different. The Duke of Kent was there for Day One of play, as were Pippa and James Middleton, siblings to the Duchess of Cambridge. Just a pair of seats from Pippa sat former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, herself a big golf fan (and the first-ever female member at Augusta National), but looking to enjoy the tennis being played before her eyes. And golf's Rory McIlroy was about the grounds as well, taking in the match of his girlfriend, Caroline Wozniacki, who won in straight sets. 

Video of the Day
Wimbledon is a tournament unlike any other. But who is Wimbledon? Find out in this fantastic feature video.


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