Rafael Nadal won his 33rd straight match at the Monte Carlo Masters on Wednesday, defeating Jarko Nieminen, 6-2, 4-1 in their second-round match. The Spaniard hasn't lost at the tournament in eight years.
A few facts about Nadal's historic winning streak:
1. His last (and only) loss at the tournament came to Guillermo Coria on April 17, 2003. Nadal had to qualify to reach the tournament and entered the match ranked No. 104. He defeated No. 7 Alberto Costa in the second round (the biggest win of his career up until then) before dropping the third-rounder in straight sets to the 26th-ranked Coria.
2. Nadal got revenge for the defeat, beating Coria in the next two Monte Carlo tournaments in which he played (2005 and 2006).
3. During the win streak, Nadal has defeated players ranked Nos. 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9. The only single-digit rank he hasn't bested in his Monte Carlo career? No. 2, a position he held for much of the run.
4. Nadal defeated No. 1 Roger Federer in three straight finals (2006-2008).
5. Since the start of the 2007 tournament, Nadal has dropped one set in Monte Carlo, to Novak Djokovic in the 2009 final. Last year he dropped 14 games in the entire tournament.
6. Nadal has won 23 sets by a score of 6-0, 6-1 during the streak. That's 34 percent of all the sets he's played.
7. Only four of his 68 sets have gone to a tiebreak. (Two came in one match against Federer.)
8. Last year was Nadal's easiest run to the title as he didn't face a single player in the top 10. In the previous tournaments, the nine-time Grand Slam champion faced as many as three top-five players en route to a championship.
The last time Nadal lost in Monte Carlo: Michael Jordan was still on an active NBA roster (he officially retired from the Washington Wizards later that day.) 50 Cent's "In Da Club" was the No. 1 song in the country the last time Nadal lost in Monte Carlo. "Bend It Like Beckham" was still in movie theaters. The Concorde was still flying. And Roger Federer hadn't won a Grand Slam.
- Rafael Nadal
- Guillermo Coria
- Roger Federer