The Sports Matrix: Friday 29 June 2012


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The Independent Online

Nadal shocked by world no 100 as Murray goes on

Rafael Nadal was last night sensationally knocked out in the second round by the little-known Czech Lukas Rosol in the biggest shock of the tournament so far. The No 2 seeded Spaniard, who won the French Open on clay earlier this month, struggled throughout against the world no 100 and went down in five sets, losing 6-7, 6-4, 6-4, 2-6, 6-4 for his earliest SW19 exit since a defeat at the same stage to Gilles Muller seven years ago. The exit of the two-time champion leaves the bottom half of the draw open for Andy Murray, who was earlier made to work for his victory over Ivo Karlovic – who was left cursing the officials on Centre Court.

"I feel cheated," the Croatian said after his 7-5, 6-7, 6-2, 7-6 defeat. "It was outrageous. In my whole life, I didn't do this many foot faults. After this, the whole credibility of [the] tourn-ament went down for me." Murray, pictured, faces Marcos Baghdatis in the third round.

Elsewhere, home interest was dampened by the exits of Anne Keothavong and Elena Baltacha in the second round of the women's singles. MORE

Balotelli fires Italy to Spain reunion

Two fine Mario Balotelli strikes helped Italy overcome Germany 2-1 to take them through to Sunday's final with Spain. The forward scored twice in the opening half before Mesut Ozil's late consolation. Italy now face a second match of the competition with holders Spain. MORE

Ronaldo: Portugal have to be proud

Cristiano Ronaldo has insisted Portugal left the tournament with their heads held high. "We have to be proud, but the truth is that we are a bit frustrated," the forward said, after the penalty shootout loss to Spain. "We did what we had to do [and] played well." MORE

Rodwell left out of Pearce's Team GB

The Everton midfielder Jack Rodwell has joined David Beckham in being left out of Stuart Pearce's squad for next month's Olympics. The 21-year-old has suffered from hamstring problems and misses out along with defenders Chris Smalling and Kyle Walker. MORE

Ward lets Fish slip off the hook

James Ward came close to a first appearance in a Grand Slam third round, pushing the American No 10 seed, Mardy Fish, before losing in five sets. "I gave it my all, but it wasn't good enough," said Britain's world No 173. "The atmosphere was unbelievable." MORE

Farrell completes England return

Andy Farrell has agreed a deal to rejoin the England coaching team until after the next World Cup. The former Saracens coach was part of Stuart Lancaster's Six Nations set-up last season but then opted to remain with his club. MORE

Cavendish happy to play team role

Mark Cavendish is relishing being part of Bradley Wiggins' bid to win the Tour de France. "I'm going to experience something different," the sprinter said. "I've never gone in with ambitions of winning the Tour in the team."

Clitheroe fails in qualification bid

Helen Clitheroe was disappointed in her attempt to qualify for the Olympics at the European Championships yesterday. The 38-year-old, suffering from a foot injury, was almost half a minute off the pace in the 5,000m final. MORE

England seek rise to No 1 position

England begin their five-match one-day series with Australia at Lord's today in the knowledge that a 5-0 whitewash will take them to the top of the rankings. "It would be an amazing achievement," said the captain, Alastair Cook. MORE

Opinion: James Lawton

Iker Casillas is the equivalent of the Red Baron for Spain. He is the man to whom the nation turns when opponents find a way through the strangling web of La Roja passing. MORE