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Asteroid Named After Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal© Getty ImagesRafael Nadal

World No. 2 Rafael Nadal has reached new heights: an asteroid has been named after the 22-year-old Spaniard, a week after his epic Wimbledon triumph against Roger Federer.

The Rafael Nadal asteroid, currently located between Mars and Jupiter, is 4 kilometers in diameter and travels through space at a speed of 20 km per second. It had previously been known as '128036' since its discovery in 2003.

The International Astronomical Union approved a request placed by the Astronomical Observatory of Mallorca that the asteroid be named in tribute to "one of the greatest tennis players of all time."

Nadal, who hails from the Mallorcan town of Manacor, has been invited to the Observatory to visit its installations.

Nadal defeated five-time defending champion Federer 6-4, 6-4, 6-7(5), 6-7(8), 9-7 in the longest final in Wimbledon history, at four hours and 48 minutes in duration. In doing so, he became the first man since Bjorn Borg in 1980 to clinch the Roland Garros-Wimbledon double.

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