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Fernando Verdasco
Rafael Nadal beat Dusan Lajovic to set up match with David Ferrer
Rafael Nadal beat Dusan Lajovic to set up match with David Ferrer

Maybe, just maybe, Rafael Nadal was a tad vulnerable, the thinking went before this French Open. He had lost three times on his beloved red clay already this year, more defeats than he ever had on the surface before heading to Roland Garros. Then came an admission, after the Grand Slam tournament's third round, that his back was bothering him and slowing his serves. Well, leave it to the eight-time French Open champion's upcoming quarterfinal opponent — 2013 runner-up David Ferrer, one of the men who beat Nadal on clay this spring — to set the record straight. "Rafael," Ferrer said, "is always the favorite." Nadal certainly looked the...

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