Nadal's late win leaves him free to cheer

SUN WIRE SERVICES

, Last Updated: 7:51 AM ET

WIMBLEDON, England -- With the sun setting behind Centre Court, Rafael Nadal was racing to get done so he could concentrate on another important match.

The four-time French Open champion chalked one up for Spain over Germany at 9:12 p.m. local time with his 7-6 (3), 6-2, 6-3 victory over Nicolas Kiefer in the third round at Wimbledon.

But that wasn't the Spain vs. Germany victory that was foremost in his mind immediately after the match -- he wanted that to come today when the Spanish soccer team takes on the Germans in the European championship final.

The middle Sunday is set aside for rest and recuperation at Wimbledon, and Nadal didn't want to worry about his third-round contest with Kiefer being carried over until tomorrow if it became too dark to keep playing.

"I was a little bit nervous, because for me it was important to finish the match," said Nadal, stifling a yawn.

Rafa loves his soccer and has a bit of pedigree.

His uncle, Miguel Angel Nadal, "The Beast of Barcelona," played for Spain in three World Cups, in 1994, 1098 and 2002.

GIMELSTOB APOLOGIZES

Justin Gimelstob will make a donation to the Women's Sports Foundation following his derogatory comments about Anna Kournikova.

Gimelstob was reprimanded by the Tennis Channel, where he is a commentator at Wimbledon, shortly after his sexually charged remarks were made on a radio show last week.

BLACK FEARS FOR COUNTRY

Cara Black is safe now in the traditions and serenity of Wimbledon. Back home, in Zimbabwe, it is far different and far more troubling.

"It's all over the news so I think everybody is aware what's going on and players do ask me," she told The Associated Press. "But every Zimbabwean is in the same situation so it's frustrating, but you've just got to get on with things and hope things will be fine."

Black, 29, is a six-time Grand Slam doubles champion. Four titles have come at Wimbledon, including three in women's doubles and one in mixed.

She fears the consequences of speaking out about Zimbabwe, where counting continued in a widely denounced presidential runoff.

SUGIYAMA'S SLAMS DONE?

After setting a record for most consecutive Grand Slam appearances in women's or men's tennis (57), Ai Sugiyama isn't sure if she will be back at Wimbledon. "I'm sure I'm going to play the U.S. Open, but the next year I don't know," Sugiyama said.


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