Super Human Djokovic Refuses to Lose Against Murray, Meets Nadal in Rome Finale
by Sean Randall | May 14th, 2011, 9:53 pm
  • 358 Comments

It may only be for another 16 hours or so but Novak Djokovic is still unbeatable. Although today the Serb had a lot of help staying perfect.

Andy Murray served at 5-4 with the Serb’s 37-match win streak in the balance and a place in his first career clay final on the line but the Scot tossed in two double faults and that was that.

Djokovic, who looked dead and gone and physically ailing from some sort of hip injury, broke back for 5-5 and then took charge eventually closing out Murray in a third set tiebreaker to win 6-1, 4-6, 7-6(2) to advance to the Rome Tennis Masters final where he’ll meet again Rafael Nadal for a fourth time this season.

“It was a fantastic match and whoever saw it knows how close it was,” Djokovic told Reuters. “He played really well. I had to earn my points as he wasn’t making a lot of errors. It took a lot out of both of us and unfortunately someone had to lose.”

I felt Murray had a chance but after the first set it looked grim. I thought Djokovic wasn’t playing great but he still blew Murray’s doors off the in the first set. Credit to Murray who regrouped and scraped through the second.

In the middle of the third, Djokovic looked wobbly, tired and at times he seemed content that the streak with his streak ending today especially after getting broken at love to go down that break. But high marks to Novak for getting up off the canvas (or dirt) and gutting one out.

Now it’s a question of fitness with Nadal looming.

“I’ll do what I can, I have a team of people who will do their utmost to get me ready, there’s not much time but we’ll see how I play,” Djokovic said.

“The important thing will be whether I’m fit or not, that will play an important role so we’ll see how fit I am.”

And for Murray, this follows in a long line of collapses that will haunt the Scot who turns 24 Sunday. More often than not when Murray loses a tough match he regresses, let’s see what the upcoming two months hold for him now. Will he rally or will he sulk like he did after the Australian Open final?

“I’m one of the best closers in tennis and I very rarely, especially against the best players, lose matches when serving,” said Murray. “But I played a bad game and I made two double faults. It was good match and I had chances to win. He played very well in the first set and I did not really get into it. I think after that, especially towards the end of the second and third sets, there was some very good tennis.

“I can compete with those guys and I am going to need to play like that and even better if I want to win the French Open,” he said. “So I am going to work hard over the next 4-5 days to build up to it. This has given me confidence going in now. What happened tonight in terms of finishing the match off, it will not let me down. It is the first time it has happened to me and I’ll make sure it is the last.”

Best closers? No you’re not Andy.

As for tomorrow, conventional wisdom is that Djokovic is gassed and a fresh, healthy (un-sick?) Nadal will roll. Djokovic will mail it in, not risk serious injury and be satisfied to end the streak to Nadal knowing that he wasn’t 100%. And he could, but I’m not sold. (He could even withdraw before the match, that would really be a curveball – keep the streak intact, deny Nadal.)

Novak knew the challenge ahead of him down 5-4 in the third when he could have given in and nobody would have blinked an eye. But full credit, he still wanted it, showed that raging desire and took it.

And sure, Djokovic played a 3-hour match today but many players have played matches of that length and still recovered and won the next day. Yet in this new age of wussified players we don’t expect that anymore. And that’s too bad.

So tomorrow I’m going to expect Djokovic to complete the pre-French sweep and beat Nadal. If that hip is OK and he’s not totally drained (though he’s talking like he is – “I’ve played more matches than any player, so it’s normal that you get exhausted. I will do my best to recover for tomorrow”) I think he wins. Nadal hasn’t looked great and like last week, this court – it’s a fast clay court – helps Djokovic more than it does Nadal. That’s right, in this rivalry which Nadal leads 16-10, 9-1 on clay I think Nadal has a better chance against this new Djokovic on hardcourt than on the dirt!

Once again the key, for me, will be Nadal’s serve (assuming Novak’s fit). Because if Rafa doesn’t serve extremely well Djokovic is going to pounce on it and dictate the point from there. He’s a great returned, Nadal’s not a great serve and on clay Nadal’s serve is exposed and even Rafa knows it.

“The situation now is a little bit different and I think he is playing fantastic – he is unbeatable this year and I know that it will be a difficult match if I play against him,” Nadal said of Novak. “But, there is no reason not to fight and there is no reason to not play my best and have confidence on my serve.”

From the baseline it’s been pretty even now. Djokovic missed a high number of balls today but Nadal’s been making some bad errors all week, as well. And I think Djokovic’s backhand has been nasty and if Nadal goes back to that forehand-backhand exchange we saw in Madrid it could be trouble for the Spaniard.

Djokovic’s forehand has more firepower but it’s also more error prone, so I would expect Rafa to tease that side more tomorrow and maybe bring the Serb to the net a little where he’s not as strong as he is from the backcourt.

Djokovic’s second serve is attackable but Nadal just isn’t that offensive minded in his return game. Maybe he will be tomorrow?

And even though he calls Novak the favorite, it’s now Nadal the one with the real pressure. After today’s epic the pressure is off Novak. He can almost go into the match and have fun knowing the Grade A effort he gave today. But Nadal can’t afford to lose again on the eve of the French. Last week it was the altitude, this time Djokovic is tired. The pressure is squarely on Nadal. He’s the King of Clay. He’s suppose to dominate on this surface and he’s the one who wants the revenge for the beating he took last week in front of his home fans.

So if Djokovic has any gas left in the tank, tomorrow is the day to drain it. He’s come this far, he just needs two more sets and then he’ll have a few days off to rest. Why stop now?

In the women’s final it’s Maria Sharapova, who thumped Caroline Wozniacki, against French Open finalist Sam Stosur.

Match time is at 4:15pm local, 10:15 ET, which means under the hot sun in Rome (more trouble Novak?). Tennis Channel has the coverage. ESPN3.com will have live streaming.

SUNDAY ROME SCHEDULE

CENTRALE start 12:00 noon
S Peng (CHN) / J Zheng (CHN) vs [3] V King (USA) / Y Shvedova (KAZ) – WTA Doubles Final

Not Before 2:00 PM
[7] M Sharapova (RUS) vs [6] S Stosur (AUS) – WTA Singles Final

Not Before 4:15 PM
[1] R Nadal (ESP) vs [2] N Djokovic (SRB) – ATP Singles Final
M Fish (USA) / A Roddick (USA) vs J Isner (USA) / S Querrey (USA) – ATP Doubles Final Time TBA


Also Check Out:
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Wayne Odesnik Suspended Two Years From Tennis for Doping
ATP Marketing Geniuses Again Change Tennis Finale
Roger Federer Shows Up at the Super Bowl
Tsonga, Del Potro Make Shanghai Masters Cup Debut Sunday

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358 Comments for Super Human Djokovic Refuses to Lose Against Murray, Meets Nadal in Rome Finale

Kimmi Says:

tough match tomorrow..i think rafa takes this one.

Hope we get a good match though..


jane Says:

Highlights of Muzza vs. Nole semi in HD:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VQ37c1m7ByA


Kimberly Says:

Don’t you think Maria sharapova, who has struggled so in her tennis comeback, and putting in such a great performance to beat the number one player could get more than one line mention?


jane Says:

Kimberly, Go Sharapova tomorrow, although Stosur will be tough; here’s a write up for you:

http://edition.cnn.com/2011/SPORT/tennis/05/14/tennis.sharapova.wozniacki.stosur.li/


Kimberly Says:

Jane, I have already read it of course! Thank you though!

She looks so happy in that picture. I swear, I may even want her to win more than rafa, she has struggled so and I feel if she can just win a big tournament like this she can become a major contender again. Maybe start her own streak? (not likely) but at least be a top five player?

However, stosur is tough on clay. I’m just hoping sharpovas champion mindset will bring her through.

She is struggled so in her comeback. I feel beating the number one player was a big big step for her confidence wise. And the match was totally on her racket. Woz had no answer for her firepower. I’m rambling but I was very excited!


jane Says:

Kimberly, I feel the same, and we know Maria is only missing the French Open so a big title on clay gping in could be huge. :)


Anna Says:

I think this was the best I’ve seen Maria play in a while. Her fiancee was fist pumping her on after every good point. I like Sam but I hope Maria takes this one.


felix Says:

I dont really get it
why, seem like, Novak really want to win Rome?
its cause him alot of energy, and may disturb his preparation for RG, is that correct because of his sponsor?
I think, win all the master series, is nothing compare to win one roland garros
Especially, if he get crush by Nadal at final today, will really wake Nadal to believe, that he can beat Novak anyway….


Skeezerweezer Says:

No talk of an all USA doubles final on Clay?


Henry Says:

Sean: “Djokovic’s second serve is attackable but Nadal just isn’t that offensive minded in his return game. Maybe he will be tomorrow?”

Love how Djokovic has been playing so far, but your above statement is very wrong. Both Rafa and Nole are the serve return leaders. Nadal is no. 1 when it comes to 1st and 2nd serve returns, followed closely by Djokovic.
So what are you talking about??

…and the myth you and other anti Nadal writers like to create about Rafa being defensive only, doesn’t take into consideration the above or the fact that he’s been one the leaders when it comes to hitting winners also.

Once again, I urge you to do some more homework when coming with unsubstantiated statements. Let’s just enjoy these guys’ 4th final.


Kimmi Says:

looks like not a good day today. just when maria and sam starts warming up..rain. players back to the locker room. hope it is not a long delay.


farley Says:

I agree that Novak is super human, above all the rest, including Nadal. For the first time, Nadal will lose in clay court. No one now can beat Novak.


Danny Says:

“Best closers? No you’re not Andy.”

I’d say he is. Before last night, can you name the last time he served for a match and ended up losing?

I can’t!


al Says:

Hmm will the rain cool down the afternoon heat some? If so that’s a bit of good news for novak!


Sean Randall Says:

al, Yup. Rain should help Novak. Also, the start time will be pushed back into the evening and Novak’s played a lot of his matches at night.

Danny, how many sets has Murray won in Slam finals? ZERO. That’s not closing.

Henry, Nadal (like Federer) gets a lot returns back in play but he doesn’t go after them the way Novak does. Big difference!

In three sets – against Soderling and first set of Murray – Djokovic lost a total of THREE points when returning second serve. There’s my homework.


Kimberly Says:

i am a nadal fan but at this point until Novak actually loses m match i’ve got to say he is better on all surfaces and the favorite in this match and ROland Garros. I would be in denial and a dreamworld if I didn’t acknowledge that. Don’t think Nadal is playing badly, he’s been in 6 finals in a row. Just someone else who is playing a bit better on all surfaces.

Of course this can change, as momentum in tennis always does.


Danny Says:

“Danny, how many sets has Murray won in Slam finals? ZERO. That’s not closing.”

You have a different understanding of ‘closing’ than i do.

Closing to me means being ahead in a set/match and holding your serve to win it.

In those slam finals, he was serving for the third set in Australia agasint Federer but was broken. Apart from last night, that’s the only time i can think of him failing to close it out.

If you have a different definition of closing i’d love to hear it.


Sean Randall Says:

Danny, it’s one thing to close out Florian Mayer it’s entirely something else to try and close out Djokovic on a big stage when the world is watching.

When the pressure is on in a big time match Murray comes up short time and time again.

Among the Murray fans, who really thought it was over once Murray got that break for 5-4. Very few I bet.

Had it been Nadal, Federer, Roddick even Soderling getting the break that match is probably over.


dari Says:

This kinda reminds me of uso semi ANd final situation- anybody think they won’t play at all today? Rome forecast doesn’t have much break in the rAIN…


Kimberly Says:

well good luck to Maria and Rafa if they get to play! I am off to show houses for a few hours, maybe i will get to watch the matches when I get back!

Murray is not a closer. Remember the Nadal WTF match? Federer third set of AO. Nadal, Fed and Roddick, Ferrer would have closed. And despite what everyone says about Roddick, he is a competitor and he would never show up at a GS Final not ready to play (Murray, Berdych, Soderling)


Skeezerweezer Says:

^ yeah I was thinking about that too. A little different though, Novak is in a much better place mentally and he didn’t play a full 5 setter like he did at USO. If it get’s delayed till tomorrow all bets are off for a Rafa advantage. It’s already kinda huge that it’s delayed till the evening time….


Kimmi Says:

it will be even great for nole if they don’t play today dari. i want to see the match today though, 8pm start will be perfect for nole….tomorrow is a work day.

yesterday he was stretching the hip or something..hope it is nothing serious.


Kimberly Says:

dari–well i hope it is the same result as USO final!!!!! But after Madrid i’m not optimistic.


Skeezerweezer Says:

Agree with Kimberly & Sean about Murray, but doesn’t mean he can’t be. The way he’s played lately against Rafa & Novak proves he is capable, and Cahill has obviously helped. This is a guy who game was best on HC, and now has a formidable game on the dirt….nice to see he could be in the mix at FO. I am sure someone like Cahill is going to work on that, it’s a must.


Danny Says:

“When the pressure is on in a big time match Murray comes up short time and time again”

In slam finals, yes. Hard to argue with that. But he has only been in position to close out one set in those finals. He’s not played well enough to be in that position more than once in slam final. Normally when he’s serving for a match he closes it out 95% of the time.

6 masters series titles would suggest that anyway.

I do feel there is a lack of context when people talk about Murray though. How many current players have even reached 3 slam finals? As a Brit I’m just glad we have somone competing for slams!

I think (and hope) he is finally realising that he needs to go out and win these finals, rather than just trying not to lose them. I think (and hope) he just needs a set in a final and he’ll be flying.


dari Says:

3 sets not 5, a better novak- hope those factors are enough to give different result than uso


Sean Randall Says:

Rain has cleared. Sharapova-Stosur about to start. Nadal-Djokovic to follow.


dari Says:

Thx for heads up Sean.
Go, Maria, get the title!


jane Says:

Murray will be fine. Danny, I know what you are saying; Murray has closed out some big matches, including Masters titles won in finals against Fed and Novak. Also, I remember tnat tight match between the two of them at the YEC in, I think, 2008. Murray won. So he is capable, of course. He has had a few nail-biters, like WTF, AO last year 3rd set w/Fed, and yesterday, where he did not close it out. That doesn’t mean he can’t do so, nor that he hasn’t done so. He will. And he will win a slam too. I believe it.

Good to know my rain dance worked for Nole. ;)


jane Says:

Go Maria, Go!


dari Says:

Maria looking pretty good. Anybody who watched yesterday, did you see her fall? Giant people falling is quite a sight.
So many are waiting for the day Murray brings it all together in a big match and wins his first major- including me!


Danny Says:

jane – i agree, the worry is in these epic matches he ends up losing them at the minute. Not through failing to close out a winning position usually (the Nadal WTF match he actually broke Nadal when he was serving for it) but usually because he is too cautious.

That’s the main thing i want him to get out of. He has all the shots, and wonderful mobility… But he relies too much on the ‘counter-punch’ style of play. If he stepped up to the baseline and went for his winners a bit more I believe he could be a multi-slam winner.

He’s trying to change that mentality, he took it to Novak last night and was fractions from winning on a surface where he is weakest and never usually gets near the top players.


dari Says:

That was a great ace by Maria at 0-30. That’s gotta feel good for her to be able to count on her serve at the moment


Kimmi Says:

at the moment maria is more consistent than sam. no match. too many errors from sam…if she continues like this this match will be over soon.


BlackCat Says:

Can anybody tell me where can I watch the matches.
Stupid ESPN3 is replaying yesterday’s semifinal.

Thanks in advance.


jane Says:

Yes keep going Maria.

Danny, yep always nice to see Murray going for his shots. Cannot type much as am on tiny phone now. Hope I can get home to see Nole v Rafa…


Kimmi Says:

sam making the match of it..she just broke back. I want maria to win too but please lets not be a rout..its a final after all.

sam has a very bad final record btw.


dari Says:

I’ve never seen Maria’s boy in the crowd before. He’s a good cheerleader and appears to be having a lot of fun.
Keep it up maria!


BlackCat Says:

Can anybody tell me where can I watch the matches.
Stupid ESPN3 is replaying yesterday’s semifinal.


dari Says:

Have you tried from sport or live score hunter, cat?


Kimmi Says:

sharapova stosur H2H is 7-0 in favor of maria. something about maria game sam does not like.

sam is suppose to be a better clay courter too…

maria serving for the match..she will be happy winning a big tournament at last…

GS next..french open is wide open this year.


Kimmi Says:

ha, the court was open for sam..she missed it


Kimmi Says:

congrats maria. i did not give her a chance in rome but she proved me wrong :)

great to see her back. too bad for stosur. too many errors especially on big points.

bring on rafa nole..go nole but…..


dari Says:

Congrats to Maria!
Sam looked a bit lost out there today. Her serve and spin do not have the effect on tall Maria, plus she donated so many errors.
Way to go Maria, she looks very happy!


Kimmi Says:

maria speeches are always great. she speaks well, with humor too. nice to see her holding big trophy.

Go maria…start winning. make the WTA tour interesting again..


dari Says:

I know Sam was runner up, but she got a little bit of the cold shoulder in tjat ceremony compared to the way they showered maria. They weren’t even trying to hide it either!


dari Says:

colder and wetter today is another edge for Rafa. This will be a tough one. Hope novak has enough juice so that its at least close.


Kimmi Says:

nole to chose to serve. here we go!


Kimmi Says:

isner/querrey won double. fish/roddick withdraw due to roddick shoulder injury. not good news for roddick!is he still playing in nice?


Kimmi Says:

Happy birthday muzza..i know most of you wished him yesterday, i was waiting for today:)

good luck at the FO muzza.


Kimmi Says:

nole camp looks to believe on him..maybe we should to. go nole!


Daniel Says:

Don’t like Djoko playing in white. prefer dark outfits for him.


dari Says:

I concur, Daniel


Colin Says:

To those people who have trouble with the definition of “closing” (including Mr Randall) – in this context there is no argument. In this context, I repeat. Murray made it quite clear he was talking, not about sets but about serving for the match and then losing the. It would be so wonderful if, just once in a while, people would respond to what Andy has said rather than what they’d LIKE him to have said.


Daniel Says:

Well, Nadal come out to play. Very intense deep balls with his backhand. He is not tentative form that wing at all as in some of their last meetings.


Ike Says:

Hey Daniel, dari, kimmi, jane, & all!
Hope u guys are njoying the match.
I am still confident that Nole will win this one!


Kimmi Says:

wow! rafa is pumped up


Kimmi Says:

hi ike! i dont know..rafa is MAD!


Sean Randall Says:

Both look very focused. Rafa especially so. And he’s serving better. Long way to go here.


Kimmi Says:

aaaah, bad smash miss


Daniel Says:

Sh..t. This is match was for 40-15, now 30-30 and low on morale.


Daniel Says:

Moon ball Nadal is starting to get on my nerves!


Kimmi Says:

what defense from rafa…djoko should go to the net to finish those FHs


Kimmi Says:

djoko is pumped too..we have a match!


Daniel Says:

Hei ike, your conviction is even bigger tha Duro’s!:)


dari Says:

Hi, Ike
You have your own.prediction streak on the line with this matxh, too! Hope all stay in tact :)
It’s looking tough and slow out there, good of novak to get that game after missing the smash


Vaaamos Says:

novak does not look tired to me….he is matching nadal’s every shot..


Daniel Says:

2 drops so far and he misses both. If he was clicking he would have made those.

Seems Djoko is a little late when covering some backhands shots. In MAdrid he was dictating, and he is trying to end points more quickly.


Daniel Says:

With this Sunday in my home club kind of volley he is not going to end the point.


Kimmi Says:

so tense this match..rafa gets on everything!


Daniel Says:

NAdal is bizarre with these moon balls on the backhand, I hate this kind of game, when I play agaisnt someone who is doing it all the time.


dari Says:

Insane angle


tfouto Says:

Really insane..


Kimmi Says:

ok..djoko is serving first, a break here he serve for the set..in my dreams!


Sean Randall Says:

Big service game for Nadal. Break ahead?


Daniel Says:

NAdal didn’t find a first serve in this game


Kimmi Says:

yay!..my dream came true. Go nole. serve it out


Sean Randall Says:

Nadal missed a bunch of first serves. Djokovic made him pay.


Daniel Says:

Djoko breaks, amazing rallys so far. They are both in it. NAdal strangelly miss 3 forehands when attacking by my count, he is having problems when he is going for ht ekiller shot.


Kimmi Says:

HOLD nole HOLD!


fed is afraid Says:

novak is just too good.
kinda like when rafa used to
play against federer.


Kimmi Says:

Tough..go nole


Daniel Says:

Wow, how can NAdal hold those crosscourt backhand in his forehand as if it is the simples shots to do. He made Djoko tire and miss.


blank Says:

fed is afraid,

Maybe time to change your display name ;-)


Daniel Says:

Djoko missed 2 inside out forehands. Time to serve!


Kimmi Says:

Going for tooo much. c’mon nole..concentrate


Kimmi Says:

WWOW! break back..


Daniel Says:

This ballons ball always landing in are annoying the hell out of me. God!


The fighter Says:

Hold plz….


Kimmi Says:

they are going to kill each other..hope nole breaks again here..


The fighter Says:

Daniel

Do not watch it


Daniel Says:

Djoko can’t let this set go, he had won last 4 against Rafa and served for this one. Even if it goes to a tiebreak, he has to win this set. Otherwise he will just get mentally and physically tired.

The match was going accordding to serve and then it got really tense.


van orten Says:

nadal as alwasys keeping the ball in play waiting for the ue …and djoker delivered!!!! what a shame


Daniel Says:

Nadal borke waiting Djoko to miss, It wasn’t a go for broke game, Djoko had that game on his racket.


van orten Says:

come on noooooleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!


dari Says:

MONSTER!!!!!!
Keep going, novak!


Kimmi Says:

WOOOOOOOOO! the guy cant stop amazing me…


Ben Pronin Says:

Nadal: I like to hit moon balls off my backhand.

Djokovic: I guess that’s cool, but I like to hit crazy angled winners off mine.


blank Says:

dari,
I was going to say exactly that – Novak is becoming a MONSTER! Unbelievable!


El Flaco Says:

Rafa throwing up a lot of moon balls in this match


tfouto Says:

Yeah! Great Djoko! Has a chance, but have to finish in 2 sets…

Nadal always break in beginning of the 2nd set when he looses the 1 set… Nole has to be concentrated.


Sean Randall Says:

Super Human!

Djokovic wins third straight set over Nadal on clay.

Rafa is rattled.

Novak needs one set.


Ike Says:

great set from Nole (of course except that one service game), lets’ take the second set now!


van orten Says:

hahahhaha @ ben pronin!!!!


van orten Says:

dont lose serve now nole go for it !!!


Daniel Says:

See! Nadal won too many matches with this defensive style. Enough already. I rather see him playing like US Open 10 and lose than this and win.

All the action is in Djoko’s hand.
Nadal is pushing these balls in his backhand too the moon cause he knows he can take it, his only shot is if Djoko misses, as he did when serving 5-3.

Agaisnt Fed at least NAdal has a game plan and he attack and take control of points. Here agaisnt Djoko he is not finding answers, and made 6 UE on his forehand trying to attack.

5 straight sets agaisnt Nadal, wow!


Sean Randall Says:

Rafa’s actually playing pretty well today, still coming up short.


El Flaco Says:

I think Djoko has to win in straights. He won’t have enough left in the tank to win in the 3rd.


Daniel Says:

Djoko should hit this ball to NAdal body, it’s the safest shot when the 2 are kissing in the net. BAd play, but right thing to do. He tried the paralel and missed the point.


Krishna Says:

Wow amazing.one more set and Nole beats Rafa and wins Rome :O .. Rome plays similar to Paris..so a win here is definitely a warning shot to Nadal :) ..


van orten Says:

nadal is only over when he is over!!!


Ike Says:

kimmi…it doesn’t matter how MAD Rafa is, it’s not going to bring him any luck :(

Daniel….yes, i am totally convinced about Nole winning this one & French Open!

dari….i don’t think my prediction streak is on the line, it’s safe, nole is going to win this one & FO!


dari Says:

Hope that hip flexor holds up for another winning set.


tfouto Says:

I hope Djoko has the energy to finish 2nd set…

Hope he does not get an injury… Hes seems preety muscle stained…


Sean Randall Says:

Daniel, that could be the play. He the ball at Novak, or bring him forward.

With Djokovic serving first in the second with a set lead he can really tee off now on Nadal’s serve. And Rafa knows it.


Krishna Says:

Is this a best of 3 final or best of 5?


Duro Says:

I’m quitting my job here…


Sean Randall Says:

Krishna, from my understanding Rome is faster than Paris. Monte Carlo is most in line with the French Open in terms of court speed, etc.


Ike Says:

Daniel…agree with u re. “defensive” tennis from Rafa. When was the last time Rafa hit more winners than his (top 5 ranked) opponent. It’s very rare to see him hit more winners than his UEs! That, in my opinion is not no.1 like!!


Kimmi Says:

nole don’t give rafa easy ponts..concentrate


Ike Says:

IMO…Rafa’s agnry face/reactions, grunts, etc kind of make people believe that he is playing “attacking / agressive” tennis, but he is not


Krishna Says:

Oh ok Sean. thanks for pointing that out :) I thought in the past Rome was slower.maybe it has changed. Wish these guys had played in Monte Carlo lol.


Ike Says:

Krishna…i wish ATP Masters finals (i mean ONLY the finals) should be best of 5 sets, but unfortunately many times there is no off week so they stopped having best of 5 in Masters.


Daniel Says:

What a response by Djoko after NAdal screamed when he won the 40-40 pont.


Ike Says:

i wish ATP website had some analysis re. court speeds :(


tennis coach Says:

any live free
feed on internet, anybody?


Kimmi Says:

c’mon noleeeee


van orten Says:

dont loosen up nolee pushhh him keep pushinnnnggg


Kimmi Says:

ooops, is rafa OK?


Ike Says:

i m not fully convinced that yesterday’s 3 hr. – 3 set match has drained Nole. Think about the Rafa – Verdasco semi in AO-09 that was something like 5 hr., next day Rafa beat Fed in 5 sets!
Of course that was on hard courts, but still i think many pros can handle it.


Daniel Says:

BAd karma, NAdal should stop overcelebrating this points. He lost after 40-40. Now saved break point, scream and Djoko attack his BH, Than he falls baddly.

He should just be quiet!


dari Says:

Oh no, Rafa.
Whew he’s ok


van orten Says:

noleeeeeeeeee


Krishna Says:

Hey Ike.. ya I remember in the past these masters finals were best of 5..like when Federer played Nadal in their epic Rome final (2006) ..they changed it i guess.


Ike Says:

yes!!!


Dory Says:

My Novak!!!!!!!!! He breaks for 2-0!!!!!!!! Go Nole!!!!!!!


Daniel Says:

Well, this is it. Nadal can’t hold Djoko anymore, unless Djoko has a bad day. Because he is not even having space to breath out there.


Kimmi Says:

breeeeak! go nole.


Kimmi Says:

HOLD Novak..big hold here!


Kimmi Says:

DF..aaaaargh! HOLD nole


Daniel Says:

Now Djoko DF, another tense game this will be.


Dory Says:

Head to head will soon be 16-11!!!!!!! If Novak gets a positive win record against Rafa, maybe people will stop saying Nadal is better than Federer just because of their head to head.


Krishna Says:

Novak looks tired..double faults.. and Nadal keeps hitting moon balls.sigh..


Daniel Says:

See, he won more points with these ballons ball, I think NAdal should just hit to the moon, Like Hingis used to do just to piss off her opponent.:)


Ike Says:

i wish they could show the speed of FH / BH, net clearance distance etc.
They did mention Rafa is hitting ~95 cm over the net from BH side, & Nole is hitting 56 cm
But they should show more scientific analysis of their games.


Daniel Says:

This is really ugly s..t!

I bet if NAdal loses he will say in the presser: I didn’t like the way I played the final!


Ben Pronin Says:

Nadal: Ok I really like to hit moon balls, you think if I annoy you enough with them it’ll become effective?

Djokovic: No. Here’s a winner for thought.


Daniel Says:

But he is right, he needs something to disrupt Djoko’s rhytm


Ike Says:

Dory…there is still long way to go (re. Nole vs. Rafa, etc). Nole has to win lot many GS. I believe he will win all four GSs. He has the complete game to do it.


Kimmi Says:

break back..again. back on serve!


Dory Says:

Oh no!!!!! Concentrate Nole! Don’t lose your focus.


Daniel Says:

Stupid shot to conceed the break back Djoko! He is trying to create drama for jimself, and us.
The only edge Nadal still has is his abbitliy to come back, Djoko can’t alow it.


van orten Says:

nadal with his moonballs is unworthy for a pro la dies and gentleman…he plays like aranxa sanchez
really really annoying


Sean Randall Says:

Both guys are getting killed on second serves. Nadal’s won 3 pts, Djokovic’s won 3 pts.


Ike Says:

Rafa has to mix up his game against Nole, should come to the net more


Krishna Says:

#1 player in the world hitting moon balls lol..agree with van orten..he is unworthy..


Kimmi Says:

those moon balls seem to work..

c’mon nole


van orten Says:

nadal plays like a lady today..as i said before pretty annoying


Ike Says:

re. Rafa’s “moon balls” …i don’t think he ever had really fast down the line BH, he can hit BH fast cross court but not down the line


Daniel Says:

Nadal can’t do nothing more. It’s all in Djoko’s racket, if he wins 3 out of 4 moon balls points, he wins it.


van orten Says:

what is wrong with nadal playing like this¿????


Kimmi Says:

nole on fire…


Krishna Says:

Wonder who takes longer between points..Djoker or Nadal…? :O


blank Says:

Moonballadal.


Krishna Says:

haha..


Daniel Says:

I prefer if Djoko tries drops shot in some of these moon balls, He is already inside the court.


Kimmi Says:

moonball worked there…


Ike Says:

i bet Fed is thinking wish he had two-handed BH, could have beaten Rafa lot more times :)


Daniel Says:

Desperate!


Ike Says:

Daniel…give Nadal a “moonball” break :)


Kimmi Says:

he holds! maybe rafa is coming back…

c’mon nole..


Krishna Says:

Ya I agree Ike.i was thinking the same thing..if Fed had a two handed backhand.. he would have beaten Nadal more times on clay I think.. we would have seen Moonballadal come out to play against Fed :O lol..


dari Says:

gotta hold after missed chances like that, let’s go novak


Daniel Says:

He will keep doing, he save 2 BP “forcing” Djoko’s mistakes with those balls.


van orten Says:

what is wrong with nadal playing like this¿????
absolutely losing any respect for him if he keeps playing like that..in my club there is a code not playing like a girl or grandfather …just a pain in the aaaa


Daniel Says:

Ike, is not just me, is everybody. No wonder why I don’t see one die hard Rafa fan here today, they are embarassed!


van orten Says:

i mean those 5-6 year old girls so ladies pls dont feel offensed


Kimmi Says:

c’mon..not errors


Daniel Says:

I think even Djoko is surprised to see Nadal playing like this, that’s why he is missing so much.


van orten Says:

all nadal fans take a good look at nadals playing style and reflect !!!


Daniel Says:

40-0, and Djoko missed a bunch ok backhands. He has to regroup fast.


Kimmi Says:

oh nooo..was 0-40 that


Daniel Says:

van orten,

But this is what they like, the defensiveness and tier down opponents into errors thing.

It has always amused me.


Kimmi Says:

phew! hold!

can he break now?????


van orten Says:

nadal will start serving moonballs on first serve soon hahaha


Daniel Says:

At least the match loses intensity and running side to side, which will preserve Djoko’s body in the long run.


Kimmi Says:

it is nadal tactic. it worked there for a little bit..hope nole can counter those moonball now. go nole!


dari Says:

Nadal would be stupid not to at least try the moonball with novak.
I can’t blame him.after losing three finals in a row.
Still strange to see


Krishna Says:

hahaha.. as long as Djokovic doesnt tire..he should win..lets see..


dari Says:

Fun camera angle on that first point on tennis channel


El Flaco Says:

That happened to me once in the juniors. This guy was playing aggressive against me and I was hitting everything back just as hard. Half way through the 2nd set he stopped hitting hard and coming to net. A lot of moon balls and junk. I tensed up and started missing. He ended up beating me. It sucked.


Ben Pronin Says:

It’s like the quality of Djokovic-Nadal matches is deteriorating. The Miami final was awesome with both guys really taking it to each other. When I think about Nadal’s backhand in that match I think of those outrageous cross court backhands that he blasting from the corners. Now he’s moonballing probably 75% of his backhands. He’s playing pure defense, 20 feet behind the baseline, the way he played back in 05. And when he tries to attack on the forehand he’s missing more often because he has no rhythm.

I think he’s still in a pretty good position to win this match because Djokovic is starting to miss a little more and by the third set you’d have to think he’d be too tired to deal with Nadal’s incessant moonballing. Either way, pretty boring to watch.


Ike Says:

Daniel…but still i will credit u for changing Rafa’s name to Rafa “the moonball” Nadal LOL


van orten Says:

nadal just not standing djoker having him figured out !!!


Daniel Says:

First net ball into Djoko’s hand. He was doing those all week, now in acrucial point to level the game.


Kimmi Says:

owooooo lucky nole!


Ike Says:

Ben Pronin…i think Nadal should go home and practice some tennis with a fence just 10 ft. behind the baseline that should bring him close to the baseline!


Daniel Says:

It wasn’t me, was somebody else.


Kimmi Says:

nadal luck there too..cancels out


van orten Says:

and even the crowds hate it


Daniel Says:

Another point he won with a MB = Moon ball.:)
Maybe this is getting to Djoko’s head as well.


Ike Says:

it’s just matter of time…Rafa’s serve is going to be broken again & Nole should win this one this set


Ike Says:

Daniel … u r so gracious :)


Kimmi Says:

hold nole!


Daniel Says:

Even on return. God, doesn’t he got some dinity left?!


Ike Says:

ok Daniel…now we will have new winners category in tennis…MB Winners LOL


van orten Says:

incredible but it is as it is nadal has lots of lobby but seeing him play like this today reminds me why i never liked his playing style starting in roland garros 2005


Ike Says:

kimmi…don’t panic, i m here :)


Ike Says:

Daniel…u cracking me up with all ur comments on Rafa re. MB LOL


dari Says:

Yeah, Ben but this is clay.


Daniel Says:

Djoko needs to win this, I am eagger to wait him SCREAM those MB out of lungs! and mine:)


van orten Says:

noleeeeeeeeeee


Dory Says:

C’mon Novak now break Rafa and serve for the match.


Ike Says:

i told u so…it’s just matter of time


Daniel Says:

This forehand Nadal hit when running away his backhand into the net tell’s it all.


Krishna Says:

lol I am making fun of Nadal on facebook and twitter..Moonballadal hahaha :P


dari Says:

Look at novak trotting to the chair. Ha!
Break him now, novak!


Kimmi Says:

ike – this nole is just too good. when i think nadal will break he holds..AMAZING!


Ike Says:

Daniel…do u do standup comedy for living / on the weekends? LOL
MOONBALLSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Daniel Says:

Ike, MB Winners

Priceless!!!:)


blank Says:

Krishna,
That’s copyrighted to me ;-) But I will allow you to use it.


Daniel Says:

Finally, a Nadal of old point!


Ike Says:

Kimmi…keep the champagne ready!!!


Ike Says:

oh Daniel…have u ever been to a Rafa match…i bet u will scream MOONBALL when he hits one for winner LOL!!!


Daniel Says:

The Gods os Tennis are making Nadal pay with the net cords in Djoko’s favor.


Ike Says:

ok guys im going to take 5-10 minutes break to watch Rafa’s MOONBALLS on TV, i will be back LOL!


Krishna Says:

haha thanks blank :)


Daniel Says:

I will be attending this year US Open, round 1, 2 and 3, day and night matches. Just to be sure I will see all Roger and Rafa play. But maybe I will go shopping during Nadal’s matches, out of protest!:)


Kimmi Says:

wow, rafa holds easily there..an ace helped out too.

noles turn now..hold!


Krishna Says:

haha nice Daniel :)


Kimberly Says:

nadal looks tired and resigned to the loss :-(

maybe he can shock me and turn it around. Only got home at 2-0 in the second but quality of both looks pretty good. Nadal not even playing bad at all and still losing. Superhuman.

I am off to the gym, enjoy all.

AND CONGRATS TO MARIA. I think she is a real contender in the next to GS!!!!


blank Says:

Djokovic should quit trying droppers and should go for outright crazy angled winners if he wants to finish the point. Odds would be better that way.

It’s been a dropshot disaster for Djokovic so far.


Daniel Says:

Awfull,

I can even hear the comments in the audiance.


blank Says:

Daniel,
Can I borrow your ticket while you are shopping? :-)


Dory Says:

I agree. Dropshotting Nadal is not a very good idea.


Daniel Says:

See, did you guys hear this scream. It’s the hell out of annoying to keep receive this MB, and NAdal is not even manage to make them deep.


dari Says:

Daniel- did you do usta presale for the tix?
I have some questions for you, but for now gotta see this match


Dory Says:

Moonballing is like playing badminton on a tennis court. :P


Daniel Says:

Yes Blank! If NAdal wins this match playing like these, I will not watch him play…. Yeah right!!:)


Daniel Says:

Yes Dari, I got a mini plan for the first week.


Dory Says:

Phew! 5-4. Please this should NOT go to third set.


Kimmi Says:

wow! can he break here…c’mon nole


blank Says:

4 points to the title and to 1 weeks rest before the monster can start gobbling up things again!


The fighter Says:

Hold rafa plz


Daniel Says:

Djoko added more spin to his backhands, he was hitting a lot in the net after the MB. He can be giving this points to NAdal, at leats make him hit another shot.

Now tension on Nadal, who played behind the entire match.

Time for Djoko to go for some offense returns whenever he sees a second serve.


Ike Says:

Nole, now break Rafa’s serve (& his spirit)!


Sean Randall Says:

Three points away for Novak.


Dory Says:

OMG OMG OMG!


Krishna Says:

omg 2 points away..kick his @$$ :O


blank Says:

Sean,
If Novak wins, you should stop calling him super human and start calling him monster!


Krishna Says:

1 point!!! L:O


Kimmi Says:

OMG!


Daniel Says:

Wow, Djoko!!

He better win one of the next 3 points!


Dory Says:

Djuggernaut as some call him. 0-40 wheeeee!


tfouto Says:

30-40… c’mon Nole!!!


Krishna Says:

crap he is saving them..


Daniel Says:

This is it, last shot this game. Go Noleeeee!!!


Ben Pronin Says:

Hmm, Sean, you said you thought Djokovic might be the one to tank the match in Madrid. Is it possible that these pathetic moon balls are Nadal’s way of tanking the match. Should they meet at the French, there will be no moon balling and Djokovic will be caught somewhat off guard?


Dory Says:

How quickly those match points disappear against Nadal!!!!


Kimmi Says:

WOW!


Daniel Says:

F>>>>YOU MMMMMMMMMMMBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBB


Dory Says:

O Novak!! You did it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


skeezerweezer Says:

FRIGGIN WOW


Krishna Says:

booya! OVER AND OUT!! :)


Kimmi Says:

INSANE!! Nole…I bow to you!


tfouto Says:

:D YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So much Adrenaline!!!!!


Ike Says:

Yes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Dory Says:

Djokovic!!!!!!!!! I don’t believe it! 4 in a row against Nadal in finals. 2 in a row on clay! On his surface!!!!!! I’m overwhelmed.


tennismonger Says:

un effing believable…


El Flaco Says:

Quien es tu papi?


tfouto Says:

IKE you were right.. :)


fed is afraid Says:

the net exchanges aren’t as friendly anymore.


andrea Says:

wow. novak is a machine.

congrats to him and maria….nice to see her win another title.


Ike Says:

where r the “experts” who were saying Nole must be tired by playing 3 hrs. yesterday?


gordon Says:

Napred Srbine!!!


Ike Says:

tfouto, hope u njoyed the match


andrea Says:

and it’s about time we had some new results for the clay court season….the nadal show was getting a bit predictable.


blank Says:

fed is afraid, That’s because Nadal is afraid. Who wouldn’t, if its a monster’s hand that you have to shake!?


fed is afraid Says:

at least murray gets a set.


sar Says:

OMGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG


gordon Says:

Roland Garros in next to be taken!


El Flaco Says:

fed is afraid Says:
the net exchanges aren’t as friendly anymore.
———————————————-
Same thing happened with Nastase and Connors. Nastase owned him and was all friendly then Connors started beating him regularly and Nastase wasn’t so nice anymore.


Ike Says:

andrea…please don’t call Nole a machine. Machines are repetitive, Nole is creative, great, and on his way to become a legend!


tennis coach Says:

He did it again, 2 down, one more to go. No doubt he is the best player in the world!


dari Says:

What a match point, what a player!
Novak!
Nadal has got to be PISSED!
but it is a great time to be a tennis fan. We are seeing phenomenal tennis- talent, hard work, confidence, and a gluten-free diet unleashed!


tfouto Says:

brutal!!

Have you notice that Manolo Santana and the italian guy were rooting all the way for Nadal? Maybe the italian guy is the responsible for the shameful 6 hrs difference between SF.

Nadal moonball sucks… horrible tennis… when Nadal wants he plays nice aggressive tennis, but please not this ugly defense tennis…


Daniel Says:

No Ben,

He is hopeless. Sena kept saying after all the wins since IW that UNcle Toni will fiugre it out what to do next time they play.

Well this is it: Hit the ball up and try to kill some bird flying by! :)

This is amazing. NAdal fasn must be feeling what we Fed fans felt during MC 2008- AO 2009.

Nadal only has MC because Djoko did not play.

Now I think a final in RG will be enough to be #1, regardless of Nadal win it.

He won easier agaisnt Nadal on clay then hard. HAhahah

Super congrats Djoko’s fan, it is your time to shine after a long 3-4 years wait. Enjoy!

For Nadal, I don’t know how much damage is left. He is playing greater than everybody else, apart from today. So he should be ready for another RG, IF Nole is not in the final.


Sean Randall Says:

Ben, moonballs won’t work. Nadal needs to beef up his serve or hope someone else takes out Novak b/c it doesn’t look like he can do it.


skeezerweezer Says:

Nole is the first I have seen to completely nullify Rafas mosnter FH, as you can see that is like cutting off the head of the snake. He had to resort to moonballing, which was actually a good strategy. He got to stay in the match more than he should have as a result, but in the end proved he knew he couldn’t stand toe to toe with him from the back court.

Simply outhit Rafa with power and movement. Amazing stuff after 3 1/4 hr match yesterday…Congrats to Nole! Great fight from Rafa….credit to him trying to change strategy with the style of game he has to unlock Novak, although in the end, Nole was the man, again.


Dory Says:

When Nadal won 3 Masters 1000s in a row last year, I wondered who in this day and age could match that. And now Novak wins 4 Masters 1000s in a row!! Maybe Roland Garros and Wimbledon next. That would be dreamland right now, still quite far away.


Ben Pronin Says:

I know so come French Open, we won’t see any moon balls.


tfouto Says:

Ike i loved the game… Djoko rules!!!

i think he was tired, but dispite that he won… he’s just good enough… he just keep streching…


jane Says:

Okay, I cannot believe it. I am guilty of thinking he would be tired. But the extra time with the rain helped a little maybe?

Congrats to NOLEEEEE! :))))))) His second Roma title.

Interesting how much that meant to him, and surely adrenaline is helping to keep Nole going. Good that he has a break now.

Interesting too how Nadal changed tactics. It worked too for a while. Kudos to Rafa, always an excellent fighter and gracious in defeat. Commiserations to his fans.


Ben Pronin Says:

The question was whether Djokovic could validate himself by beating Nadal on clay. Who would’ve thought he’d be coming out of the clay season as the best on the surface, Nadal included. Heavy favorite for the French, no question about it.


i am it Says:

For me, the King of Clay is dethroned. For those still unconvinced, it will be so officially at the FO.
Nole does it again !
Big big congrats to him. It cannot get better than this.
There was a time (back in ’07) he had only one or two admirers here, and I even had to go his site to invite them over. It feels good to see so many here today.
I think Djoko’s No. 1 is probably assured by the FO or Wimby. It’s his time now and ahead !!!


Lulu Iberica Says:

Congratulations to Djokovic. He certainly earned this victory.

Still, I am so proud of Rafa! Kimberly, I don’t think he looked resigned to defeat. Throughout this match he never gave up, even though he was behind and being outplayed the whole time. He really could play smarter and try to be more aggressive, but he played well, and he played his game, and he never quit. Rafa Nadal is my champion, win or lose. Now, there is a lot of work to be done before Roland Garros — that is the real prize. A victory there this year would be the sweetest yet!


gordon Says:

The best player Novak Djokovic! Congratulation!!!


El Flaco Says:

Manolo looked miserable at the end of that match. Then when Rafa got it back to deuce he was massaging his hands together in excitement. Oh well not this time Manolo.


Dory Says:

And how ironic it all is! Novak doing the same thing to Nadal what Nadal did to Federer.


Andrew Miller Says:

Dang, Nadal and Djokovic speak Italian very well. Man these guys arent only the sport’s leaders, but they ARE global.

Pretty sick display of both tennis and intelligence.


Dory Says:

16-11. Next stop Roland Garros! Soderling worries me there. That guy broke Nadal’s clay streak one year and Federer’s semifinal streak next year. He’s the streak breaker.


Krishna Says:

With wins in madrid and Rome (faster surfaces than RG in Paris)..does Nole have a shot at beating Rafa in Paris in a best of 5 match?


andrew Miller Says:

Dang – Nadal and Djokovic both speak Italian fluently. These fellas are amazing at tennis and pretty darn smart.

Nadal has a puzzle for the French Open – if he collides against Djokovic, now playing the best on all surface, he has to take it to Djokovic. Nadal’s the world’s fastest player but retrieving isn’t working anymore against Djokovic.

Means he has to serve huge and take chances, and pull the trigger. Flatten it out, go for his shots, play a different way on clay.

Otherwise we’re looking at a new champ at Roland Garros for 2011.


Kimmi Says:

clay fast, slow doesn’t matter. so happy for novak. me tennis fan is happy. we have a challenge. the challenge is big too. we waited for years now it has come..in the form of novak.

Congrats to nole fans too..

I should have believed in him and picked him in my bracket :)

Go rest and win roland garros!


tennisfansince76 Says:

wow. i am now officially impressed. Nole has beaten Rafa on a sea level clay court in straight sets. that is unprecedented. Nadal had basically been unbeatable in Rome for 6 straight years ( one loss to Ferrero w/ a bad blister). Fed came close in 06 but now Nole makes it look routine. wow. Nole has all but sealed the deal on No. 1 for the year. if Nadal can win FO he will get himself back in the mix somewhat. if Nole wins FO it is all over. Nadal would have to dominate the 2ns half of the year as thouroughly as Nole dominated the first half to pull even. how likely is that. not very. Nadal has always counted on domination during the clay qtr and then be in the mix for the 2nd half of the year. w/out the clay qtr he has problems. i am rooting for Nole as long as he keeps winning Fed’s grand slam record is safe. i am perfectly happy w/ Nole winning 8-10 grand slams.


i am it Says:

If you win two titles in a row on clay by beating Rafa in the finals, you are the new King of Clay, for the moment. Nole absolutely deserves it.

Modestly put, Rafa finally has a genuine challenger on clay. And French Open is no more given for Rafa.
If Djoko beats Rafa at the FO, which I believe he will if both reach the final, most will accept that the Serb not only will become No. 1 but also the new King of Clay.


Daniel Says:

What amazes me is that he won the last 6 sets they played: 2 in Miami, 2 in Madrid and 2 now, and if it wasn’t for Nadal MB surprising Djoko, the score would be uglier.

Even when Federe was losing 5 in a row to Rafa he had never lost 6 straight sets.

Imagine what will Novak do if they meet in the fast hardcorts this year. Although we already saw that in Cincy and Paris in the past.

And the question raises, who would end Djoko streak. We should do a prize contest here?!


Dory Says:

Djokovic recently said how in one way he found Masters 1000s tougher than Slams: http://www.tennistalk.com/en/news/20110512/Djokovic_says_Masters_1000_tougher_than_Slams


tfouto Says:

@tennisfansince76 well if Djoko keeps winning then maybe he beat RF 16GS


sar Says:

I don’t believe it, still.


Ike Says:

Kimmi…i think u should ask me before picking up ur brackets :)


skeezerweezer Says:

@ I am it,

Hey there :)

RE: FO no more a given…..Don’t forget Murray has put him some good stuff in the Clay season this year pushing Rafa to 3 and almost upsetting Novak, and then throw in Rafa and Fed and we might have some welcome competition for FO, no? Hopefully it will be that exciting with Nole leading the charge of course.


Milos Says:

Every tournament he manages to lose a set
:)))))))))))))))))))


Ike Says:

tfouto…i hope Nole can & will win lot more GS but not sure if he can win 16. He is 24, thus he has about 5 years good tennis ahead of him. But, i don’t think he can win 14/20 GS, it’s impossible. i hope i m wrong, but i doubt it.


stu Says:

Nole needs to win only 3 more (relatively easy?) matches to have the longest winning streak of his decade :). On 2 surfaces. All the more commendable because of the quality of players he had to beat along the way :)


van orten Says:

i want fed in nadal s section at the french:::

and murray in the monsters half


Daniel Says:

Another thing this last years, what one player does the pther duplicate the following year:

1 – NAdal won RG-WImby double in 2008. Federer won in 2009.

2 – Federer almost made RG-WImby-US Open (lost to DelPo, but was 2 points from victory) in 2009. Nadal wins RG-Wimby-US Open in 2010.

3 – Nadal wins the clay sweap in 2010, MC, Rome, MAdrid and RG.
Now Djoko enter RG undefeated winning 3 tourneys, Belgrade, Madrid and Rome. If he wins RG, it will not be a clay sweap, but MC lost the aura as in the past (not everybody play it, so the whole clay sweap lost it’s appeal). The fact is nobody did it when the 3 Masters were equal in importance, not even Nadal. So Djoko can somehow, duplicate Nadal’s feat winning 3 toruneys in clay undefeated in 2011. Amazing stuff.

But, will the same person win RG, WImby and US Open, or if Djoko wins AO-RG-WImby will have the same effect than Nádal’s 3 last year.

I think if Djoko wins RG it will be huge, cause nobody had won both this Slams in the same year in a long time.


blank Says:

My predictions. Fed takes out Nadal in the FO SF and beats Djokovic to claim his 2nd clay GS…in my lala land.


jane Says:

Skeezer is the bracket monster: he won today, for Rome, and he is winning overall, for all the events so far. Ike you might want to challenge him since your predictions are astounding. ;)


van orten Says:

anybody has doubts djoker would have crushed nadal in monte carlo lol


Ike Says:

Milos…Nole makes ur country proud again! Congrats!
I am wondering when Marko will join ranks of his big brother, it will be very interesting to watch his progress too.


jane Says:

P.s. congrats skeeze, and hellooooo i am it! :)


skeezerweezer Says:

jane,

Don’t temp Ike to take me on….I know how to moonball….:)…seriously thanks for the shout out and a big virtual ‘High Five” and “Chest Bump” for your fav’s win today!!

blank,

I love your predition, I am all in on that :)


tfouto Says:

Del Potro will beat Nadal!!!

Ike its difficult to beat 16GS, but i think it pretty possible to Djoko winning all 4 GS this year…


Ike Says:

jane…good luck with ur Canucks tonite.
c u in couple weeks.


Dory Says:

Yes the handsome Marko. I’m waiting too for his breakthrough. Imagine the Djokovic brothers. Like the Williams sisters.


blank Says:

Skeeze,
You are then invited to my lala land! I can make it happen anytime ;-)


jane Says:

Thanks Ike, fingers crossed. :)

Skeeze, cheers.


Ike Says:

Ok, people have been whispering it little bit, but i m going to be bold and predict that Nole wins all four GS this year!!!

Don’t just watch tennis, play tennis! And that’s what i m going to do now.

i m signing off…so long!


Dory Says:

Federer winning French! And Djokovic Wimbledon! That would be sweet too!! RF’s the GOAT. The real GOAT ever.


dari Says:

Thanks blank, now I know how to fill out my RG bracket!
I would kill for your lala land to be real.


Daniel Says:

Count me on lala land, what they serve there some mushroom tea?!:)


andrea Says:

another great day of sports….tennis finals in rome and then canucks vs sharks tonight @ 5 pm. it’s a girl’s dream come true!!!


tennisfansince76 Says:

@tfouto. sorry but that is a longshot considering that Djoker is 24. after 27 to 28 it gets much harder to win as consistently. plus we don’t know who else may come up to challenge Djoker. i seriously doubt either Nadal or Djoker will be where Fed is now when they are hitting 30. Djoker maybe. Nadal will be long gone. his game is not one for endurance. the oldest player to be no. 1 is connors at 30. the oldest no. 2 are agassi and connors at 32.tennis is a tough game when played at the pro level.

Nole is 24 so Nole fans get to enjoy the meat of the sandwich for a few years barring injury.

@blank its a nice dream though


dari Says:

Oh yeah, Daniel!
Do you have your uso ticks already from presale or buying in june?


blank Says:

Daniel,
They occasionally serve Moon balls ;-)


Kimmi Says:

skeezer – how did you do it…leading the race with a big margin hey, i m jealous :)

Congrats mate.


Daniel Says:

Presale Dari, they said we will be able to print in home and I receive a confirmation e-mail, but it will happen in June-July.


dari Says:

Even with presale with usta membership, I didn’t think you could get that good of seats?
How did you fare?


tennisfansince76 Says:

as for Fed i think this could be the year he slips even further at the French. depends on conditions and his draw. last year conditions were bad. but the previous year he could have gone out several times(acasuso, haas, delpo) and in the previous couple of years he had tough matches against Nalby and Davy in the semis. the fed mystique and a nalby injury may have saved him there.
i put my highest hopes for him this year at Wimby. the USO will be hard for him from now on. when you get past 30 it is murder to win the semi and finals on back to back days unless you get a soft match in the semis. Fed was definitely conscious of that last year at USO semis.


Duro Says:

The streak!!!


tfouto Says:

Federer started win at 23… if he wins more 3GS he have 5 in the end of year… but i dont think it will happen either…

but no one tought Federer could do it either especially after Sampras… you never know…


Kimmi Says:

definitely djokovic brought his A+++ game in todays match. the djoko of yesterday against murray would have lost today.

he knew the only way to beat rafa is to be A+++++. and he did it…


Daniel Says:

Dari,
I placed for Lower Promenade, I know it is where your noze bleed, but I attended Wimby once and seeing from above is not that bad. I was checking another site which offer for the Lodges (which tsome say are better than courtside) but it was more expensive. And the plan has some advantages int he complex.


skeezerweezer Says:

^ This just may put Fed in a better position going forward to sneak up and get another Slam. With all this Rafa/Nole duality lately, me thinks Fed will be enjoying being under the Radar for awhile. It’s not like the top guys are blowing him off the court, he is right there, so I wouldn’t count him out yet. But TF76 says though, his time is runnin out, he’s gonna have to do something soon.

Duro & stu,

Didn’t want to forget the hardcore forever fans of Novak, congrats!!!


Kimmi Says:

djokovic has only won 2 slams. he needs to win at least 3 in a year to start predicting nubers like federer, even nadals.


Nina Says:

I’m out of words really, completely overwhelmed. I’ve been a Djoko fan since 2007 and I have had to endure two years of listening to people say he was a slam wonder, that he could never be up there with federer and Nadal. Well guess what, he’s now playing the best tennis on the planet, undefeated in 39 straight matches, won last 7 tournaments, defeated Federer and Nadal 7 straight times and is 13-0 against Top 10. Maybe he will never win 5 RG like Nadal did or reach the heavenly heights of Federer’s 16 slams, but what he has done this season is historic and nobody can’t take that from him. Nobody.


dari Says:

Thanks for answering my questions Daniel! Arthur ashe is a tall bowl and I don’t really wanna sit up high.
Ive gotten free tix outside the last few years, but have NEVER gotten lucky enough for a fed session. I think I’m gonna have to make my own luck and turn over the buckaroos this year.
Have fun!


skeezerweezer Says:

@Nina, yes amazing stats, amazing stuff, and nobody can take it away. What sticks out to me is the 7 Tournament win streak and 13-0 against the top ten. That is WOW material :). Got to see him in IW early this year and watch him practice up close, he was pounding the ball with ease and working very hard. He deserves it imo. Congrats.


Kimberly Says:

wow–nadal played well from what i saw and still lost in straights!

Congrats to Djokovic fans! A well earned win. (UGGGH!!!!)

Rafa fans, take heart, if he wins RG it will cancel all the losses and he is still a strong contender, as is Fed. 6 finals in a row. Unfortuanely another guy is just playing better. But never give up hope! Rafa has risen from the grave before!


Duro Says:

Skeez,

Thank you very much. You’re so kind every time. A real friend.


scineram Says:

Unbelievable! Moonballing was not enough.

Also, Nadal played 5 more matches this year than Đokovic.


scineram Says:

I forgot Nole is 6 wins away from number 1 ranking.


Huh Says:

i dont mind nadal losin to novak :D :D :D
What a joyous moment it’d be if nole actualy beats rafa to win FO!!! :)
But that said, Rafa’s not playin his best clay tenis at d moment(and i dont think nole’s not allowin him to). Rafa looks just tentativ these days whil playin nole, n tense too, therefore unabl tk unleash his worldbeatin clay court tennis; he would not be losin in straight sets in consecutiv matches in clay to novak otherwise. Make no mistake, nadal’s exponentially stronger on clay in comparison to any other surface, and the same nole wasnt even close to nadal in USO! All is not wel with Nadal, for now at least! I can never forget Nadal challenged Fed at Wimby 07, wen Fed was playin close to his best. How can the same guy keep losin to someone like Nole! Am not takin credit away from Nole at all, Nole showed to the world for the 1st time way back in 08 when none believd Fed could be beaten at a slam outside of FO, nole’s that great! But as a most devout Fed fan(who has followed the great nadal closely since 05) I find it hard to believe that such lopsided losses of Rafa to nole on clay has everything to do just playin the best tennis of his life; i m observin dat nadal, as Colin observed, is startin to look vulnerable too after the wear and tear that he has undergone for so many years to be at top of men’s tennis, seems pressure and hard work’s finaly startin to take its toll on Rafa, much like Fed, and thats helpin rivals. And Rafa’s almoat 25 n has already played a lot of succesful tennis years n this is always going to help his rivals from now onwards, coz believe it or not, there’s a limit to concentration for any endeavour, u just cannot maintain the intensity once you’ve achieved almost evrything n unfortunately/fortunately nadal has already achieved everything achievable in tennis and there’s seemingly slight drop in his intensity to compete at the highest level and more often than not all that differentiates the player’s results at the highest stage is this very factor which i mentioned.


stu Says:

thanks skeeze :). im too delirious to comment. but get on the Nole bandwagon already will ya!


Duro Says:

stu,

He has more than a champion to root for. No one leaves Federer!

Congrats, by the way… :-)


Nina Says:

Make no mistake Huh, this is not the same Nole than USO 10, not for a very wide margin.

Top story: Federer, Nadal Breeze In Basel; Murray, Ferrer Advance In Valencia
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ATP - Oct 20 WTA - Oct 20
1 Novak Djokovic1 Serena Williams
2 Roger Federer2 Maria Sharapova
3 Rafael Nadal3 Simona Halep
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