Rafael Nadal: 'As I have said many times in the past...'

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Rafael Nadal: 'As I have said many times in the past...'

Rafael Nadal defeated Michael Mmoh 6-1, 6-4, 6-2 in one hour and 47 minutes in the second round of the Australian Open. It was another good performance from the 20-time Major champion, who lost 12 points on serve and denied break opportunities.

The young American was far from that pace, giving up five serves and powerless against Nadal's 40 winners and 24 unforced errors. Rafa needed 28 minutes to seal the first set 6-1, dropping six points on serve and scoring two breaks for a dominant lead.

The Spaniard claimed the first game with a winning serve and hit an ace on the T line in the third game to stay in front. He does not. 2 broke in the fourth game with a forehand cross winner and forced Michael's error to bring another service game home and rush to a 4-1 lead in 20 minutes.

In the sixth game, a backhand winner gave Nadal a break opportunity. He took advantage of it after a forehand error by the American and held at 15 for 6-1 and a big boost before set number two. Posting 83% of the first serve, Nadal stayed strong in the second set, losing three points on serve and challenging Mmoh to repeat that if he wanted to stay in contention.

Raising the bar for him compared to the first set, Michael won the first two service games to stay 2-2. The more experienced player changed the course of the set in the fifth game when he broke at 15, followed by another comfortable turn of service that put him 4-2 ahead.

Nadal has been sidelined since July

Rafael Nadal took to Twitter to pay tribute to Spanish tennis legend Manolo Santana following the latter's death at the age of 83 on Saturday. "I have just received the terrible news of the passing of our great Manolo Santana," Nadal wrote.

"As I have said many times in the past: thank you so much for what you did for our country and for marking the path of so many." Rafael Nadal was not the only player to pay tribute to Santana following the news of his demise.

Two-time Grand Slam champion and former World No. 1 Simona Halep also took to Twitter to mourn the loss of a "tennis legend" and "kind man." "We lost a tennis legend and a great, kind man today. Rest In Peace Manolo Santana," she wrote.

Rafael Nadal has been sidelined since July due to a chronic foot injury that flared up during his semi-final defeat to Novak Djokovic at Roland Garros.