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Thursday, 13 December, 2001, 11:27 GMT
Juan Carlos Ferrero
Juan Carlos Ferrero
Ferrero is a clay-court master
Date of birth: 12/02/1980
Nationality: Spanish
Grand slams: None

Nicknamed the Mosquito, Juan Carlos Ferrero is a clay-court master who has firmly established himself at the top of the game.

Ferrero first made an impression on the ATP tour in 1999 when he won his first title aged just 19.

The following year he pushed his world ranking up to 12th and in 2001 he broke into the world's top five.

That position was based on his early season form on clay, when he won four titles, including beating Gustavo Kuerten in the Masters Series event in Rome in the build-up to Roland Garros.

That led many experts to tip Ferrero to steal Kuerten's French Open crown, but the Brazilian was in unstoppable form when the pair met in the semi-final for the second straight year.

Ferrero's time at Roland Garros looked to have come this year when he beat Andre Agassi and Marat Safin on the way to his first Grand Slam final.

But the favourite was comprehensively beaten in four sets by his fellow Spaniard Albert Costa.

Ferrero was also the key member of the Spanish team which won the Davis Cup for the first time in 2000, beating Pat Rafter and then Lleyton Hewitt to clinch the tie.

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