Frances Tiafoe knocks out Rafael Nadal in major US Open upset

Frances Tiafoe knocks out Rafael Nadal in major US Open upset

Rafael Nadal suffered a tough fourth-round exit at the US Open on Monday against American Frances Tiafoe. The 22-time major champion was clear that there are no excuses. Tiafoe was simply the better player on the day.

“We can make lamentations or we can complain now about a lot of things, but I don’t think that [is] going to change any situation,” Nadal said. “We can think, if I [didn’t] get injured, maybe I win Wimbledon. Maybe I win [other] things [in] the past. Or maybe I lost [other] things because I was not able to create this interior power after all that injuries.

“That’s part of my career. A lot of times went the proper way; sometimes completely unexpected like Australia, like Roland Garros. Of course, this was not the ideal preparation for me. But in other cases went the right way, even with not the perfect preparation. We can’t find excuses. We need to be enough critical with myself. That’s the only way to improve or that’s the only way that I understand you are able to find solutions.”

What meant the most to Tiafoe about his 6-4, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 victory over 22-time major champion Nadal in the fourth round at Flushing Meadows, though, was looking up in his Arthur Ashe Stadium guest box and knowing his parents, Constant and Alphina, were there.

“To see them experience me beat Rafa Nadal — they’ve seen me have big wins, but to beat those ‘Mount Rushmore’ guys? For them, I can’t imagine what was going through their heads,” said Tiafoe, a 24-year-old American seeded 22nd at the U.S. Open. “I mean, they’re going to remember today for the rest of their lives.”

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