Roland Garros: What changed for Nadal to complete one of the best wins of his life?


The Spaniard secured his 23rd victory after beating 57 winners against ‘number one’ and breaking the losing streak in the ‘tie-break’.

Nadal forcibly hit a backhand during the match against Djokovic.
Nadal forcibly hit a backhand during the match against Djokovic.AFP

He will turn 36 on Friday, at which age Roger Federer won his last Grand Slam with a win against marin silli at the Australian Open. it will be another busy day Rafael Nadal At Roland Garros, with cake, congratulations and gifts, before their semi-final clash against Alexander Zverev, an opponent who had defeated him on clay in only one of his last five matches. However, it seems clear that his options for a fourteenth title in Paris are beyond statistics. First depends on his body, but also on his ability to maintain the levels shown on Wednesday. 29th win in 59 matches against Novak Djokovik It was one of the best in his entire career.

aggression and small points

The last point, a backhand parallel centimeter from the line, defined the way Nadal understood the game. Despite wasting your first two match balls, the Spaniard had the confidence to take the risk with the least effective strike historically in his repertoire yesterday. With him he had his 57 . shut down WinnersOne of the highest figures during their rivalry against noelle, To put it in context, in last year’s final, the Spaniard could only hit four backhand winners all afternoon.

Reducing the number one plan to mere reactive was a great victory for Nadal, who emerged victorious even in small exchanges. Both in fewer than five hits, and both in those that were resolved in less than eight. In addition, he benefited from his opponent’s 53 unforced errors. Being severe, bleeding increased during tie break Sure, when Djokovic just gave up badly.

unexpected push

Looking for Jab in the second game of the fourth set break, Tape played a trick on Djokovic, who threw a fiery racket against the net, before the chair umpire’s inaction. in the absence of WarningIn Philippe Chattier, the vast majority of the audience dedicated a scintillating whistle to the Serbian, which underscored the favoritism of the French fans. He lamented during his press conference, “The public has contributed a lot to the turnaround of the score. 99.9% of the attendees were with them, which helped them find energy in crucial moments.”

The breath of the stand allowed Nadal to save two set points before the tiebreaker was decided. The sudden death which had given him grave despair. Because the day before the day before, the last tie break The top 10 went back in favor of Nadal against rivals Daniil MedvedevIn round robin Masters Cup 2019.

four and a half hours later

Sunday’s Round of 16 matchup against Felix Auger-Aliasimus Lasted four hours and 23 minutes, their second longest match in three years, behind only the final of the last Australian Open. Daniil Medvedev, Indeed, only during his illustrious career at Roland Garros Paul-Henry Mathieu (2006), John Isner (2011) and Djokovic himself (2013, 2021) demanded more than four hours on clay from Nadal. Therefore, the Spanish’s recovery ability was put to the test more than ever before.

Djokovic had not dropped a single set in his last four matches in Paris. His filming in Madrid, Rome and Montcarlo was much more complete, but in his moment of truth, Nadal seemed more complete. His ability to raise the bar in the crucial parts was acknowledged even by the Belgrade tennis player. “It’s not the first time that, after barely being able to walk, he recovers in a few days and reaches 100% physically. So it doesn’t surprise me at all,” he admitted. .

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