Fernando Verdasco Carmona (born November 15, 1983 in Madrid) is a professional tennis player from Spain. He is currently one of the top Spanish tennis players, he performs well on all surfaces. Verdasco started playing tennis at four years of age and got a full-time coach when he was eight. Verdasco considers his forehand his best shot, plays left-handed and has a double-handed backhand. Andy Roddick has said he considers Verdasco's forehand the biggest in the game today.
He turned professional in 2001, finishing as world number 464. 2002 was a good year for him, as he won his first Futures category title in Spain F1 and was runner-up in Spain F3. He played his second career challenger in Segovia, where he reached the final after beating Belarusian Vladimir Voltchkov in the semifinals. He then reached two additional Challenger semifinals in Kiev and in Eckental, finishing the year in the top 200, at 173.
In 2003, Verdasco played his first Masters Series tournament (Miami Masters. He joined the main draw as a qualifier, and after defeating Karol Kucera and Max Mirnyi, Verdasco lost to countryman Carlos Moyà in the third round. After this good performance, he had a poor season on clay, losing in the first round of Wibmbledon against Finnish Jarkko Nieminen in five sets. Then, Verdasco played in Cincinnati, where he lost to Andy Roddick in straight sets. He reached the third round at the U.S. Open, where he lost to Thai Paradorn Srichaphan after defeating countryman Tommy Robredo in the first round and Italian Davide Sanguinetti in the second round.
After finishing in 2003 as 109th in the world (with a 15-8 record in challengers), he had a breakthrough in 2004, when he won his first ATP title in Valencia. He defeated defending champion Juan Carlos Ferrero in the semifinal and Albert Montañés in the final. He also reached the final in Acapulco, losing to Carlos Moya. His he also reached the quarterfinals in Halle and in 's-Hertogenbosch on grass. He reached the third round in two Masters Series: theHamburg Masters and the Madrid Masters. He reached the quarterfinals in Stockholm, the semifinals in Kitzbühel and won a doubles title in Stockholm (with countryman Feliciano López), ending the year 36th in the world.
In 2005 he defeated Andy Roddick twice, in Miami and in Rome. In Rome, the match was famous for Roddick being matchpoint up on Verdasco's serve and having the match end with a double fault from Verdasco, but Roddick claimed that the serve wasn't out and the match went on, with Verdasco winning. He also reached the quarters of Valencia (where he was defending the title), Rome and New Haven; the semis of Sankt Petersburg; and was finalist in Kitzbühel, where he lost to Argentine Gastón Gaudio. But Verdasco reached his first Grand Slam fourth round at the U.S. Open, where he lost to Jarkko Nieminen after defeating Serb Novak ?okovi?. His year-end ranking improved slightly to No. 33 in the world.
Fernando reached the fourth round of Wimbledon after beating Vince Spadea and German Benjamin Becker and also upsetting 3rd seed and former runner-up David Nalbandián in straight sets in the third round. Verdasco then lost to Czech Radek Št?pánek in five sets. At the U.S. Open, Fernando reached the third round, but lost to eventual runner-up Andy Roddick in five sets. In previous rounds, Fernando defeated Fabrice Santoro in four sets and Thiago Alves in three. Fernando then lost in the quarters of Palermo where he lost to Rubén Ramírez Hidalgo and then he lost to Ramírez Hidalgo again the following week in the first round of Metz. Verdasco didn't win any match in the rest of year, he lost to Italian Daniele Bracciali in Moscow, and then in the last two Masters Series tournaments of the year, he lost to Tim Henman in Madrid Masters and to Michael Llodra in Paris Masters. Verdasco finished the year ranked 35th on the ATP rankings.
In 2007, he lost to Serb Novak Djokovic in the 4th round of the French Open. In the previous rounds of Roland Garros he beat Jérôme Haehnel in the 1st round, Dmitry Tursunov in the 2nd round and David Ferrer in the 3rd round. Before reaching the 4th round in the French Open, he lost in the first round in the 3 Masters Series tournaments on clay. He lost to Frenchman Richard Gasquet in both Monte Carlo Masters and Rome Masters, and to Czech Tomáš Berdych in Hamburg Masters. In the grass season, he lost in the 1st round in Queen's and he reached the 3rd round in Wimbledon, where he lost to 3rd seed Andy Roddick after beating American Bobby Reynolds in the 1st round and Italian Andreas Seppi in the 2nd round. At the Madrid Masters Verdasco cruised through to the second round with a win over Albert Montañés, beating him in straight sets but in second round he faced third seed Novak Djokoviv and after winning the first set, the Serb player won the second and the third sets by the same score: 6-3. At the St. Petersburg Open, Verdasco played some brilliant tennis to reach the final without losing a single set. En route to this final, he defeated Marin Cilic, who defeated Nikolay Davydenko early on, in the semifinal. However, his quest to win the title ended with a 6-2, 6-3 defeat by Scot Andy Murray. Still, this great performance should raise Verdasco's position in the ATP rankings to 27 the next week.
Fernando entered the Australian Open as the 25th seed. He won his opening match with a strong performance against Thierry Ascione 6–4,6–0,6–3. He lost his second round match in a close battle with Serbian Janko Tipsarevic, who later went on to take Roger Federer to 5 sets. Fernando entered the Dubai Tennis Championships with a possible second round opponent of either Roger Federer or Andy Murray, his opponent would be Murray after he beat Federer in three sets. Fernando managed to take Murray to three sets but after a good performance he lost the match 3–6, 6–3, 6–7 (5–7). In Berlin, Fernando and doubles partner Feliciano Lopez clinched Spain's spot in the Davis Cup semifinals after defeating Germany's Philipp Kohlschreiber and Philipp Petzschner in a four hour and 45 minute marathon match, 6-7(3), 7-6(1), 6-4, 2-6, 12-10. At the Monte Carlo Masters in Monaco Fernando lost to Gael Monfils in straight sets in the first round. In Barcelona the following week he also lost his first round match in straight sets to Nicolás Lapentti. His form improved dramatically for the Rome Masters where he reached the third round, en-route he got the better of Carlos Moyà and Nicolás Lapentti (who had beaten him the week earlier) before losing in a thriller to James Blake. Fernando continued his run of excellent form into the Hamburg Masters where he beat Mikhail Youzhny in the first round 6-2,6-3. In the second round he beat Michaël Llodra 6-2,6-0. Fernando then went on to record a remarkable win against compatriot David Ferrer in straight sets, 7-6 (7-4), 6-2. His run ended when he met the world number 1 Roger Federer losing 6-3,6-3. At the French Open Fernando was seeded No.22 and enjoyed a good run, ending when he lost to Rafael Nadal in the last 16, winning just 3 games. On June 9 Fernando achieved his career high ranking of No.20, as a result of his run at the French Open. He reached the final of the Nottingham Open raising his ranking to a career high of No.18. At Wimbledon, he lost to Mario An?i? in a five set thriller in which the last set lasted over 90 minutes and ended 13-11, in the fourth round. His performance at The Wimbledon Championships brought his world ranking to a career high of No. 13. His most recent ATP victory was in Umag (Studena Croatian Open Umag), Croatia when he battled with Igor Andreev in what was called the best final the tournament had seen. Afterwards, he again improved in the rankings to 11th place. Verdasco was the 13th seed at the US Open in 2008. He lost to the 23rd seed Igor Andreev in the 3rd round.