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Nadal Loses, Safin Wins on German Grass

Newly crowned French Open men's tennis champion Rafael Nadal of Spain has been knocked out in the first round at the Gerry Weber Open grass court tournament in Halle, Germany.

The third-seeded Spaniard won the first set against unseeded Alexander Waske of Germany, 6-4, but lost the next two and the match, 7-5, 6-3. Wednesday's loss ends Nadal's winning streak at 24 matches.

In second round action, second-seeded Marat Safin of Russia survived three match points in his second set but advanced when opponent Fabrice Santoro of France withdrew in the third set because of a thigh injury (3-6, 7-6, 3-2).

Eighth-seeded Feliciano Lopez of Spain also lost, falling in straight sets to Olivier Rochus of Belgium (7-6, 6-3).

The grass court tournament is a key warm-up for the third major tournament of the year, Wimbledon, which gets under way June 20 in London.

Some information for this report provided by AP.