Banana can't slow Nadal on his birthday

Rafael Nadal extended his record winning streak on clay to 56 matches. Whit Sheppard writes on what might be the most memorable win to date during Nadal's streak.

Updated: June 3, 2006, 5:06 PM ET
By Whit Sheppard | Special to ESPN.com

PARIS -- This couldn't have been the way Rafael Nadal wanted to ring in his 20th birthday. When his last guest, Frenchman Paul-Henri Mathieu, left the party after nearly five hours, the gracious host trudged slowly to the net and magnanimously bowed to his vanquished opponent.

Mathieu wasn't too concerned, though, about overstaying his welcome Saturday afternoon on Court Central at Roland Garros, cheered on by 15,000-plus throaty compatriots to an inspired performance in a third-round ...

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