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The Story When David Nalbandian Beat the BIG 3 in Madrid in 2007

Updated: May 6

Tennis Professional player David Nalbandian kissing a glass trophy with the inscription "ATP Masters Series"
David Nalbandian lifted the trophy at the Madrid Open in 2007

David Nalbandian - One of the best player that never won a Grand Slam

David Nalbandian was a promising player at a young age, at only 16-year old in 1998, he won the Boys Junior U.S. Open title, beating in the final another promising junior; Roger Federer. Solid off both wings, Nalbandian was able to hit winners from anywhere on the court.

Nalbandian who reached a career-high of number 3 in the world in 2006, reached the semifinals or better in all of the 4 Grand Slams during his career in addition to playing Wimbledon's final in 2002 where he was dominated by the Aussie Lleyton Hewitt 6-1, 6-3, 6-2. The biggest win of his career is undoubtedly when he lifted the Player's Championship trophy in 2005 when he came back from 2 sets to love down to win in a 5th set tiebreak against Roger Federer. However, he would unfortunately never win a Grand Slam title.

Madrid 2007 - David Nalbandian's resurrection

Unlike today, the Masters 1000 tournament in Madrid was played indoor on a hardcourt in 2007. In October of 2007, Nalbandian was at the end of one of his worst season in his career following multiple injuries. It's with only one quarterfinal to his record that he made the trip to Madrid to play the Mutua Madrid Open. After beating 3 excellent players in Arnaud Clément, Tomas Berdych and Juan Martin Del Potro in the first three rounds, Nalbandian had to face Rafael Nadal in the quarterfinals.

The Argentinian dominated the Spaniard 6-1, 6-2 in just over an hour. Next, he would face the 3rd best player in the world Novak Djokovic, which he would beat in 2 sets of 6-4 and 7-6. The final boss of Madrid would be none other than the best player in the world Roger Federer. The Swiss Maestro was holding the number 1 rank uninterrupted since three years. Nalbandian would have the chance to join Novak Djokovic and Boris Becker in a select club of players who beat the best three players in the world in the same tournament.

Not only did he achieve the unthinkable, he also became the only player in history to beat the three members of the BIG 3 in the same tournament, an accomplishment he will hold alone forever following Roger Federer's retirement. David Nalbandian beat Federer in three sets, 1-6, 6-3, 6-3 to lift the glass trophy in Madrid. Two weeks later, he would once again beat Nadal and Federer en route to the title in Paris at the Masters touranement, a genius streak!

Here are David Nalbandian's highlights from Madrid 2007:

If you're interested in learning more about Rafael Nadal's career, we recommend you read his autobiography and New York Times best-seller : RAFA. You can buy this book and support Tennis Clubhouse at the same time by using this link.


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