Nadal Stays Perfect In Return, Reaches Vina Del Mar SFs; Gasquet Leads French In Montpellier
by Staff | February 8th, 2013, 10:42 pm
  • 56 Comments

Rafael Nadal remained perfect in his return to tennis this week. Playing in his first event in seven months, Nadal hasn’t dropped a set in two matches after cruising to victory today over countryman Daniel Gimeo-Traver 6-1, 6-4.

“Today I had more confidence than the other days,” said the 26-year-old Nadal. “That is positive. It gives me confidence, and reasons to believe that I’m on the right way. I’m happy to win in singles against a tough opponent like Dani and to reach the semi-finals after seven months.

“In this tournament I had a good feeling. The crowd gave me their support all the time. It helps a lot when you come with a bad feeling.”

Next for Nadal is Australian Open quarterfinalist Jeremy Chardy at 10pm local time. Horacio Zeballos and Carlos Berlocq will contest the earlier semifinal in an all-Argentina affair.

Nadal later teamed with Juan Monaco to reach the doubles final where Sunday the good friends will face Italians Paolo Lorenzi and Potito Starace in the final.

Chardy’s countrymen had a big day in Montpellier with three French players reaching the semifinal stage. Tomorrow Richard Gasquet, a winner today over Julien Benneteau, meets Jarkko Nieminen for the right to face either Michael Llodra or Benoit Paire in the Sunday final.

“I am very happy to be at this stage of the competition especially after defeating two tough players like Gael and Julien,” said Gasquet who has lost just one match this year. “I didn’t play my best tennis today. Perhaps I was a bit too passive but I got the job done. Tomorrow, I know it will be difficult. I had a very tough match against him last year in Bangkok but I will give everything to try to reach my first final here in Montpellier.”

In Zagreb, the semifinals feature three of the top four seeds. No. 1 Marin Cilic faces No. 3 Mikhail Youzhny while No. 4 Jurgen Melzer, winner of his 300th career ATP match today, tests Robin Haase.

“Of course it shows that I have had a good career so far, and when I started playing tennis I never dreamed of winning 300 matches on tour, especially reaching the Top 10,” said Melzer. “Winning 300 matches is something big.”


Also Check Out:
Nadal Resumes Comeback Friday In Vina Del Mar; Gasquet Ousts Monfils In Montpellier, Tipsarevic Upset
Weekend Wrap: ATP, Fed Cup Winners and Losers
Rafa Romps To Vina Del Mar Final; Gasquet, Cilic Also Hunting For Sunday Titles
Nadal Loses; Fed Cup Wrap; Gasquet Remains Hot
Tennis Previews: Fed Cup; ATP Montpellier, Vina del Mar, Zagreb

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56 Comments for Nadal Stays Perfect In Return, Reaches Vina Del Mar SFs; Gasquet Leads French In Montpellier

Rogerisclass Says:

“Djokovic is lucky. what he wants and it all works well for him. Give me two years without an injury and…”

http://www.vamosbrigade.com/articles2013/lequipeinterviewfeb13.html

what arrogant, excuse Nadal.


skeezer Says:

“Today I had more confidence than the other days,”

“I’m happy to win in singles against a tough opponent like Dani ”

LMAO lol…..ok. Sorry that was friggin hilarious. Dani, who for the most part is a “journeyman Challenger player”, has been on the tour since 2004, has “0″ titles, has been a finalist “0″ times, has a .154% against top 10 players, and has never broken the top 50. Currently 64. Rosol anyone?

__________

Never seen so much rafa love from Tennis X, they have no reason to complain now…Rafa is getting plenty of Love here! Fed site? Ha!


Nadalista Says:

Oh, oh……didn’t take long for the resentments to boil over. As usual!

Vamos!


skeezer Says:

^resentments? wtf? lol…..you’re off in a rafa world somewhere….have no idea what you’re talking about…come back to earth nadalista..back to earth.

____

Rogerisclass,

Excellant link, thanks. Rafa….exposed.


courbon. Says:

Firstly, I’m Novak’s fan.Secondly,I read full interview with “Le’ Equipe” and Nadals is very sincere and straight in his answers.Little bit of exuse regarding Novak lucky-but he is mostly right (only thing we should ad that Novak does a lots of Yoga which combine with the luck, keeps him healthy (so far).If you are tennis fan, regardless of whom you support, we should be happy for his return-it will make tennis more exicting (and girls happy…)


skeezer Says:

@courban,

oh yeah, me thinks Rafa is sincere also! ;)


courbon. Says:

Hi Skeezer,
we don’t know this guys (Rafa,Fed,Nole…)-how can we know if they are sincere or not?I think sometimes we over analyze every word of what they say and try to find fault (specially with rivals of our beloveds )…anyway,I thought about you yesterday ’cause on radio was ‘Billy Jean’ and I thought-is this a best groove or what.What a great song.Regarding your Maestros decision not to play Miami-if somebody is great in choosing his schedule then its him.So, I’m sure its a right decision.Also, he is aware of his limits now.Its like a good driver-he knows limits of his car.He use to have a Ferrari (body ) and now is Audi.He will get more chances winning grand slams with his ‘limited’ schedule.


skeezer Says:

giles,

go to ATP site, read his stats, post stands. a nobody.

_____

@courban,

you’re right. shouldn’t take there words as “sincere “, especially rafa. I should know better…hehe.( sarcasm )

re: Billie Jean… soon as you hear it makes you wanna move, no? Love it:)


Giles Says:

skeezer. He is a nobody that can bother players like he did against Murray in Wimbledon. And that match was on grass, a surface more or less alien to most Spaniards. This match was on clay, a surface most Spaniards excell in.
Anyway, every win that Rafa chalks up is important considering his looooong hiatus from the tour.
So, happy for the win, no?


Giles Says:

And yes, Rafa is sincere. Just ask his multitude of friends!!!!


Giles Says:

Just quoting a tweet from a Nole fanatic fan “Allez Chardy, tennis expects!” #MeanBunch


Wog boy Says:

skeezer,

You are right, five out of seven last threads are about Rafa, and when I read some posts I had a feeling that Nadal is playing GS and beating top10 players just to find out that it is 250 one and the players are something like over #50/100, no;)

But on the other hand he needs those oponents now, no?


bestsports1 Says:

Nadal believes previous tennis eras cannot match the excitement generated by the current stars of the sport.

“Sampras v Ivanisevic match, or one between those kind of players, is not enjoyable, It’s not really tennis, it is a few swings of the racquet.

It was less eye-catching than what we do now. Everyone enjoys the tennis we play much more. I am not saying we are playing better tennis, just more enjoyable tennis. For me, in the past it was just serve, serve, serve.”

http://www.atpworldtour.com/News/Tennis/2011/06/25/Wimbledon-Diary-Day-Five.aspx

hahaha. I’m interested. What Nadal made in quick grass and the hard court of the Sampras era?

Nadal is very blessed with the slow surface age. selfish and arrogant.


bestsports1 Says:

Toni Nadal: I hope now Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic will get injured.

http://www.tennisearth.com/news/tennisNews/Toni-Nadal-I-hope-now-Roger-Federer-and-Novak-Djokovic-will-get-injured-478826.htm

Toni Nadal : “it’s ATP’s fault if Rafael never won WTF”

http://www.tennisr.com/talk/toni-nadal-it-s-atp-s-fault-if-rafael-never-won-wtf-350811.html

hahaha. arrogant jerk Nadal team.


Giles Says:

True fans of tennis should be delighted that Rafa is back competing irrespective of your favourites!


Wog boy Says:

Giles,

Are you talking to me?


nadalista Says:

@skeezer,

Do you speak for every poster on this thread? My post was not even directed at you. Seems to me you are the one who needs to come down to earth……..


nadalista Says:

……unless you’ve got a serious case of the Vamos Syndrome malady and feel like lashing out at “enemies”, real and perceived……

Vamos!!


Giles Says:

Wog boy. No, I was not talking to you directly but to posters in general.


Giles Says:

nadalista. Skeezer is sore cos his fav didnt get a chance to try and demolish Rafa after his long hiatus. What better time? Rafa just back on the tour. Easy pickings for Faderer. Missed his chances to improve their abysmal H2H. Not this time skeezer.
Oh, and some fed fan referred to Rafa as arrogant. That tag is reserved for the Arrogant One as Humble Rafa likes to call him. Very appropriate indeed!!
VAMOS CHAMP


Wog boy Says:

Giles,

I am happy Rafa is back, and I said that few times before, it is not the same with or without him, but I wouldn’t use term “delighted” for tennis fans who are not Rafa fans. I would keep it for Rafa fans, it is not fair to expect that all the other fans have to be delighted, methinks.
Just one more thing, I don’t know who is that “Nole fanatic fan” but I don’t see anything wrong if he wants Chardy to win, or do we have all to cheer Rafa now because he is coming back from injury. I don’t think so, you do that when you start to pitty somebody and I am sure Rafa wouldn’t like to bee cheered out of pitty.
Rafa , stay healthy please, I want to see you competing against the bests, these ones are not the best, but you need them now.


alison Says:

Wogboy great post,Rafas fans are delighted hes back,but his rivals fans are glad that hes back thats the difference,and i completely agree Rafas a proud man and a proud player,and despite his injuries and long absense from the tour im sure like you say would not want to be cheered out of pity,and the Novak fan has every right to cheer for whom H/S wishes,as im sure many Rafa fans also root against Nole/Fed too,sorry no offence Giles.


Giles Says:

Wog boy. Maybe I shouldn’t have used the word “delighted” and should have reserved it for Rafa fans. Maybe “pleased”? That’s not asking too much
And thanks for your goodwill wishes for Rafa. His health is the all important factor.


Giles Says:

Rafa has almost 12 million die hard fans rooting for him on every aspect, his health, his career, his life. Do we need ONE more? Don’t think so.


alison Says:

Courbon spot on with the 1st line of your post,How can we know if they are sincere or not?I think sometimes we over analyze every word of what they say,and try to find fault(especially with rivals of our beloveds),here,here.


Wog boy Says:

As for me, I am happy Rafa is back, not just pleased.

That “pitty” spelling blame on my kids, I asked them and they told me “just put double T”, all the other spelling mistakes are mine. They are probably loughing now.


Giles Says:

Wog boy. That’s right, blame the kids! Lol


alison Says:

Wogboy im British born and bred,and my spelling in terrible or terible,so dont worrylol,is it pat,ronize with a Z or patronise with an S?is it realize with a Z or realise with an S?also when i was ranting and raving the other day,i said blew a gasquet(as in Richard Gasquet)when it should have been gasket,here and hear confuse me,same with their and there,problem is the English language is made up of other languages too.


skeezer Says:

giles/nadalista

There is no denying that you all are very happy Rafa is back playing anybody anywhere. Your obsessive news digging stories anything Rafa is evidence of this on this site. May he never tweak a knee, shoulder, tummy, foot, or burn a finger ever again. Vamos to your King and may his sexiness and hotness be the reason you drool everyday.

:-)


Wog boy Says:

alison,

When it comes to realise/realize, organise/organize, centre/center, cheque/check and so on, it is EnglishEnglish against AmericanEnglish, I was told so by my family, in Australia is english spelling in schools but iPhone has American one;)


Giles Says:

skeezer. “and may his sexiness and hotness be the reason you drool everyday”. How about including “the most exciting player on the planet”. Shouldn’t be too hard! Lol


Giles Says:

^^^ zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz


Ben Pronin Says:

Wow this got out of hand pretty much immediately…

I’m pretty impressed by how well Nadal and Monaco are cleaning up in doubles. They’re barely even being challenged. I mean it’s not surprising, but all things considered still quite a feat.

I’m not sure how much resistance Chardy can put up, anyway. Especially since this is clay. If his serve and forehand click like they did during the first 2 sets of his win over JMDP, then maybe we’ll be in for a real treat. But Nadal will easily expose the backhand. So I guess it’ll be a test of how well Nadal is able to execute his number 1 game plan. Can’t see him losing though, even if he doesn’t play too well.


Nadalista Says:

This will be first meeting these two on the ATP. Well, Rafa’s having trouble finding his range on his backhand so it will be the battle of the lousy backhands out there!

This is the first time Rafa is into a dubs final without a Spanish partner.

Last time Rafa won both dubs and singles in a tournament: Monaco, with Robredo


Rogerisclass Says:

Nadal believes previous tennis eras cannot match the excitement generated by the current stars.

“Sampras v Ivanisevic match, or one between those kind of players, is not enjoyable, It’s not really tennis, it is a few swings of the racquet.

It was less eye-catching than what we do now. Everyone enjoys the tennis we play much more. I am not saying we are playing better tennis, just more enjoyable tennis. For me, in the past it was just serve, serve, serve.”

http://www.atpworldtour.com/News/Tennis/2011/06/25/Wimbledon-Diary-Day-Five.aspx


Rogerisclass Says:

Toni Nadal : “it’s ATP’s fault if Rafael never won WTF”

http://www.tennisr.com/talk/toni-nadal-it-s-atp-s-fault-if-rafael-never-won-wtf-350811.html

Toni Nadal: I hope now Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic will get injured.

http://www.tennisearth.com/news/tennisNews/Toni-Nadal-I-hope-now-Roger-Federer-and-Novak-Djokovic-will-get-injured-478826.htm

Arrogant.


Nadalista Says:

tennisnba aka overestimationalnadal (among others), is in the house………….

Take it away………


Giles Says:

Arrogant is an adjective reserved for “The Arrogant One”! How many more times??? #DeafEars


Humble Rafa Says:

I cannot whole heatedly agree that the word Arrogant is exclusive reserved for the Arrogant One. The use of the word with reference to anyone else, especially, someone and whose team, is an emplar of Humbleness, is insane.


nadalista Says:

Note to Muzza: Rafa’s aura is intact. Chardy would have found a way to lose even if Rafa had not shown up……..

Vamos!


Giles Says:

Well done champ! #VamosKing


Tennis X guy Says:

Completely beside the thread topic but what do you guys think about Federer’s draw in Rotterdam?Projected path-Zemlja,Youzhny,Janowicz,Tsonga,Del Potro.


Alok Says:

@Tennis X Guy, Fed seems to be getting some very ugly draws regardless of which tournaments he’s playing.

Drawing youzhny, Janowicz, Tsonga and DelPotro back-to-back is more like a GS path than a tournament in Rotterdam.You’d think that the No.1 seed would have an easier draw.


nadalista Says:

Saw much improvement in Rafa’s back-hand in the semi…….now the movement, this will come with match-play and miles in the legs!

Vamos!!!


Tennis X guy Says:

@Alok I am completely in agreement with the last two sentences.However i have seen much nastier draws.Take Paris last year.Federer withdrew after the draw was announced.He had Berdych and Murray in his half with a possible meeting against Nole in the final.Ditto in the US Open as well.Sadly this seems to be a trend.Del Potro’s half OTOH is a joke.The only two guys who can prevent him from reaching the final are Davydenko and Gasquet and Davydenko will have to reach the SF to face him which will be a difficult task for old man davy.Tsonga always only performs his best in the slams so IMO federer will win it in two tight sets 7-6,7-5.Janowicz might have to go through Benneteau(who is also a good indoor player)to earn the matchup with Fed.Del Potro will be the real test as he’s beaten Federer in their last two matches which happened to be played indoors.


tennislover Says:

I’m not greatest player – Roger Federer

“I don’t feel better than anyone, because we need past champions to pave the way for our generation and we have become very professional,” Roger Federer said.

“They have led the way and inspired myself and other players to chase the big records out there.

“Back in the day they weren’t doing that, they were just playing to play tennis. Things have changed dramatically with the press reminding us ‘you should do this and win that and you’ll be considered the greatest of all time’.

“And anyway I don’t think you can compare different eras in tennis.”

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/tennis/18764325

very humble Roger.


Steve 27 Says:

After 31, the decline is ine inevitable. Enjoy as much you can.


Steve 27 Says:

After 31, the decline is ine inevitable. Enjoy as much you can.
Boys, dont cry.


volley Says:

@nadalista > “Note to Muzza: Rafa’s aura is intact”

Zeballos disagreed.


laslo Says:

ALOK
I hope Roger crushes Jerzy.


Nadalista Says:

@volley, ha ha ha! Amen to that.

Honestly so glad to see someone give Rafa a much needed workout. Zebalos fully deserved his victory, well played. He took full advantage of a cold Rafa, unlike Chardy.

Very happy with Rafa’s performance. Actually, ithis is more than I expected on his first tourney back. In fact I am glad he lost, this is more normal, he can look forward to improving in the weeks ahead.

On to Sao Paulo, Vamos Rafa!


jane Says:

Good comments by Fed, posted by tennislover. Agree with him about eras being too different to compare, and about how the focus seems to have shifted to chasing records.

I think the press is so much more involved now, too, due to the nature of the media today, with the internet being a HUGE shift in access to everything. It even seems to impact how players function and act now, with being PC and acting “professional” and being “managed” becoming so much more important.

Now everything is disseminated so quickly and widely that players have to be careful or they’ll be widely criticized.

It kind of reminds me of the use of fashion “stylists” for celebrities. They have to wear the “right” thing on the red carpet, and so we don’t see people taking risks and wearing clothes they’ve picked to express themselves, perhaps making “faux pas” in the eyes of some (except for lovely renegades like Helena Bonham Carter, who wears mismatched shoes if she feels like it. :)).

I wish players could be free to be themselves. I liked when Rafa wore pirate pants and had long hair; I liked when Nole did his clowning around; I liked when Andy cursed and pulled faces and had wild and crazy hair. Everything seems so policed now and it’s easy for everyone, me included, to become more of a judge and jury. It’s kind of just the nature of society, I guess, and so it impacts tennis too, but in some ways, it’s too bad. A little more freedom to just “be”, or to just enjoying playing, would be good!

Sorry for the Sunday afternoon blather. Back to my coffee and radio…


Brando Says:

Congrats to Zeballos- pleased for him to win his debut ATP, well deserved.

Re rafa: Honestly think the loss is fine. It just clearly shows the guy is still pretty rusty after coming back from a long 7 months layoff.

The loss will temper people’s over blown expectations off him on his comeback trail.

Had he won people would have said ‘meh’ about the win anyhow.

The big positive is that he has had the maximum possible matches from this tourny and THAT is the major plus.


Alok Says:

@Tennis XGuy:

I thought Fed did the right thing passing on paris with such a difficult draw. His recent draws (over the past two years) have been very tough, and it definitely kills the conspiracy theorists who claim Roger’s draws have been rigged, which some seem to harp on continuously to make thir fave players appear invincible, when they beat Fed.

It stands to reason that if most players have a tough draw leading up to the QF, then it’s not rocket science that he’d run out of stamina and endurance in the later matches.

Another problem for Fed, because he’s so popular and the crowd favorite player, (even though some fans keep tabs) but don’t realize the impact on the players, are the night matches Fed’s slotted to play at most tournaments. IMO, from some of Fed’s comments, he dislikes the night matches as it throws off his schedule, especially his eating and practising routines. I say give the night matches to the younger guys, and let them deal with the changes. I’d bet after playing back-to-back tournaments of night matches, there will be many complaints.

@lazlo: I like Jerzy, and would like to see him win more matches, due to his monetary struggles, but don’t want for him to beat Fed.

I hope that Fed gets past JJ, and goes on to win the title, but it’s a tough ask. Fed’s Rotterdam draw looks more like an MS tourney or a path to the QFs at a slam.

If this draw at Rotterdam, and the recent AO draw, does not put to rest the “easy rigged draw ” conspiracy, then I don’t know what will. We’ll see …


Alok Says:

@tennislover “I don’t feel better than anyone, because we need past champions to pave the way for our generation and we have become very professional,” Roger Federer said.

“And anyway I don’t think you can compare different eras in tennis.”

I’m glad Fed has stated this fact, same as Laver did state some years ago. It definitely puts to rest the comments of one of the top players some months ago that “this is the best era ever’, which some fans agreed with and put forth many reasons to back up his comments. And, there’s the ‘golden era” comments being thrown around.

I honestly doubt that anything in the history of sport can be compared, due to advances in technology with respect to diet, equipment and the incorporation of those other substances, and recovery equipment available to the presnt day athletes for their use.

In the early eras the players had to employ natural skills to win. Nowadays, the string/rackets make some shots look awesome, but I often wonder how some of those awesome shots would look if the present players were to use the wood rackets and strings of those eras past.

“Things have changed dramatically with the press reminding us ‘you should do this and win that and you’ll be considered the greatest of all time’.”

I don’t think it’s just the press who talk of what the players should and shouldn’t do, but some fans who talk as if they are ATP tour players, when they talk of how the players should play their games. It’s easier said than done, and sometimes very funny to read.

On chasing of records, I think it’s more the fans who seem interested in the players chasing records, than the players themselves. Look at the many stats and links some fans post endlessly in an effort to drive home those stats.

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Rankings
ATP - Nov 24 WTA - Nov 24
1 Novak Djokovic1 Serena Williams
2 Roger Federer2 Maria Sharapova
3 Rafael Nadal3 Simona Halep
4 Stan Wawrinka4 Petra Kvitova
5 Kei Nishikori5 Ana Ivanovic
6 Andy Murray6 Agnieszka Radwanska
7 Tomas Berdych7 Eugenie Bouchard
8 Milos Raonic8 Caroline Wozniacki
9 Marin Cilic9 Angelique Kerber
10 David Ferrer10 Dominika Cibulkova
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