Fognini Stuns Nadal In 5-Set Thriller, Serena Survives Threat At US Open; Federer v Kohlschreiber Saturday
by Staff | September 5th, 2015, 1:48 am
  • 209 Comments

In the best match of the tournament, Fabio Fognini became the first player to ever come from two sets down in a Grand Slam match and beat Rafael Nadal 3-6, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3, 6-4.

The Spaniard had won 22 of his last 23 matches in New York with titles in 2010 and 2013, but couldn’t match the power from the Italian for the duration of the 3-hour, 45-minute slugfest which ended approximately 1:26am.

Fognini cracked 70 winners to Nadal’s 30 and converted on 9/16 break chances including four in the final set to reach his first US Open fourth round.

The final ses saw seven breaks of serve and some incredible tennis. And in the end, Fognini scored his third win over Nadal this year, and his first over a Top 10 player on hardcourts in 18 tries.

Nadal’s streak of winning a Slam every year since 2004 ends, and the loss leaves the door that much wider open for Novak Djokovic on his path to the final.

Fognini, who was 0-7 on hardcourts this season entering the US Open, picked up his 5th career comeback from 0-2 down.

Earlier, on an eventful evening top seed Serena Williams had her struggles. Williams lost the first set to fellow American Bethanie Mattek-Sands, clawed her way through the second set, then bulldozed her way to a bagel in the third to win 3-6, 7-5, 6-0.

“She’s a great player,” Williams said during her on-court interview. “She’s fought through so many difficult injuries. I admire her for all that she’s been through. She’s always so positive. It was a really good match for her today as well. I don’t think I came out too slow today. I think Bethanie played really well. I had to adapt to her game.”

The younger Williams sister will again have her hands full in the next round when she meets powerful young fellow American and No. 19 seed Madison Keys, who on Friday overpowered No. 15 seed Aggie Radwanska 6-3, 6-2.

Keys, who had previously struggled with Radwanska’s retrieving ways, prior to the match said she hoped for another meeting with Serena at “her” home Slam.

“Fingers crossed, it could happen,” Keys said. “If it happens in my home Slam, even better. [Serena's] drive and fight is unmatched by anyone.”

Venus Williams was in stellar mode on Friday, improving to 4-0 career against Bencic.

“Today I just wanted to be aggressive, which is my style of game,” said Williams, who trailed 1-4 in the second before unleashing a torrent of winners to claim the last five games of the match. “She picked her level up, leading a break and pretty poised for her taking the second set, but it’s not over ’til it’s over. I just tried to play some good service games, get a hold, and you never know.”

The elder Williams sister will next meet teen qualifier Anett Kontaveit of Estonia, who recorded a 6-2, 3-6, 6-0 win over American Madison Brengle.

Williams has now won all four of her career meetings against Bencic in straight sets.

Other seeded winners were No. 13 Ekaterina Makarova who defeated No. 17 Elina Svitolina 6-3, 7-5, and the resurgent No. 25 Genie Bouchard who outlasted Dominika Cibulkova 7-6(9), 4-6, 6-3.

Makarova will next meet France’s Kristina Mladenovic, a 6-2, 6-3 winner against Russian Darya Kasatkina, and Bouchard will face Roberta Vinci, who beat Colombia’s Mariana Duque 6-1, 5-7, 6-2.

The men’s side was full of upsets on Friday, four to be exact, as France’s unseeded Benoit Paire toppled No. 26 Tommy Robredo 7-6(3), 6-1, 6-1; No. 27 Jeremy Chardy beat No. 7 David Ferrer 7-6(6), 4-6, 6-3, 6-1; No. 18 Feliciano Lopez defeated an injured No. 10 Milos Raonic 6-2, 7-6(4), 6-3; and No. 23 Roberto Bautista Agut advanced when No. 14 David Goffin became the 13th retirement of the US Open at 2-6, 5-7, 6-3, 3-1 with an undisclosed illness/ailment at the time of this writing.

Seeds into the 4th round were No. 1 Novak Djokovic straight-setting No. 25 Andreas Seppi 6-3, 7-5, 7-5; No. 9 Marin Cilic outlasting Mikhail Kukushkin in five 6-7(5), 7-6(1), 6-3, 6-7(3), 6-1; and No. 19 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga overpowering Sergiy Stakhovsky 6-3, 7-5, 6-2.

Djokovic improved to 11-0 career against Seppi, but had his serve broken for the first time in the tournament and was wary of his opponent’s upset-specialist past.

“I can’t underestimate the quality of my opponent today,” said Djokovic. “He’s not afraid to go out on a big stadium and play his best against big players. He won against [Roger] Federer earlier this year in Australia. He’s a good player and it’s a good win…I didn’t close out the match at 5-4. He played a very good game. I got a little bit tight. I came up with some big serves, but generally was a really, really tough three sets.”

Cilic, while stretched to five, had to come back early in the math from a break down to avoid looking at an 0-2 set deficit.

“Playing on a big court with a full house, that’s going to give you some extra motivation in the situations like today when I was set and 5-2 down,” said Cilic. “I was in the thought process that I am going to stay on the court as long as necessary. I was feeling that I wasn’t playing so well and then the ball wasn’t coming off my racquet really well. So I always focused on getting my legs in the best position and trying to make the match as physical as possible. Over time things got better, so that was pleasing.”

On court Saturday will be (5) Petra Kvitova vs. (32) Anna Karolina Schmiedlova, (2) Roger Federer vs. (29) Philipp Kohlschreiber, (20) Victoria Azarenka vs. (11) Angelique Kerber, Shelby Rogers vs. (2) Simona Halep, (3) Andy Murray vs. (30) Thomaz Bellucci, (18) Andrea Petkovic vs. Johanna Konta, (13) John Isner vs. Jiri Vesely, Varvara Lepchenko vs. Mona Barthel, (5) Stan Wawrinka vs. Ruben Bemelmans, (24) Bernard Tomic vs. (12) Richard Gasquet, (16) Sara Errani vs. (22) Samantha Stosur, (22) Viktor Troicki vs. Donald Young, Barbora Strycova vs. (24) Sabine Lisicki, (6) Tomas Berdych vs. (31) Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, (26) Flavia Pennetta vs. Petra Cetkovska, and (15) Kevin Anderson vs. (20) Dominic Thiem.


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209 Comments for Fognini Stuns Nadal In 5-Set Thriller, Serena Survives Threat At US Open; Federer v Kohlschreiber Saturday

nits Says:

Nadal’s misery continues. He had his chances but couldn’t converted them. A very sad loss for nadal. If you’ll give so many short balls you are asking for winners.


addicted Says:

While a ridiculously entertaining match, if it was any other 2 players no one would be calling a set with 7 service breaks great tennis.

And if it was a women’s match most would be lamenting about ghe state of the WTA with that stat.


jane Says:

this was nothing like the dustin brown loss, where i thought rafa played much too passively, standing too far back, and allowing brown to charge forward.

here, he fought. he served well; he hit wicked forehands. he ran down a lot. there were maybe 2 weaknesses: his second serve and his backhand, which he ran around a lot but which let him down at times.

but i don’t feel like he played into foggy’s strategy, like he did against dustin when he left so many balls short and played too far back. tonight he left some short but many balls were going very deep. his positioning was much better. he looked great at times.

but the thing is, foggy hit a “zone”, that nebulous place where he could just hammer winners on the lines for 2 sets straight, and even some of the third. all of his talent came to the fore, that easy power. i believe foggy would’ve won against pretty much anyone playing like that. it was amazing tennis.

i think rafa fans – as heartbreaking as this loss probably is – can actually take some positives from this contest. to me he looked close to his best for good stretches in the match.


dapris Says:

This is the end.Nadal should just close his eyes and count to 10.it will be a slow and rather painful death as a star fading out from the sky.That said IDEMO NOLE


Alonatp Says:

@ addicted – you are completely right!Just because a match is long and tight doesn’t make it high quality.The old Nadal would have won this much in 3 easy sets but he simply can’t do it anymore.


Alonatp Says:

did I write much? I meant match :-)


Margot Says:

You make interesting points jane and it does sound as if Fab Fog suddenly lifted his game to glorious heights but….
Nadal gave up a two set lead with a br8 in the third? I find that astonishing. Has that ever happened before?


AndyMira Says:

Sad and dissapointed as usual when rafa lose but then what do you expect from him this days?Honestly i didn’t expect him to pass 3rd or 4th round but still hurt none the less..How can you win when you play too defensive,not willing to make winners,not aggresive enough..he sends the ball to the exact same spot for 4,5 times in a row..and Fognini just to stand there..waiting and then bam!..he hit winners!no wonder Fog made 70 winners over rafa 30..and the sad thing is he will keep losing if he is not willing to change tactics..we thought by the loss he already suffered this season he will find something new to his game but no..rafa is rafa..always stubborn.


Alonatp Says:

@Andymira – it’s not about will. It’s about ability. His entire game relies on upper-body strength and sprinting which unfortunately fades sooner or later. If he could, he would certainly hit harder and run faster.


Wog Boy Says:

I wouldn’t be surprised if Fognini decides that this was good enough for him and doesn’t turn up for his next match.


Margot Says:

Often happens Wog boy.


Wog Boy Says:

Yes Margot, far too often for somebody with such a talent and deceiving (in a positive way) game. It is hard not to like him, even when he has his famous on the court tantrum.


sienna Says:

I fell a sleap after 2 nd set .
Fognini had BP in first 3 service games of Rafa.

still a lot of breaks overall in this match.

Not high level material.

Rafael was not to expect to win but the #17 target gets smaller and smaller.
He might have bit a too large peace of last coupe musqetier to enjoy his run.

back to cisca she doesnt care for tennis and he is one step closer to call it after olympics year.
will he dwindle down or regain his glory 1 more time.


jane Says:

“Ripping big groundstrokes off both wings, many on a full sprint, the two men engaged in entertaining exchanges that thrilled the Arthur Ashe Stadium crowd ”

nadal was not hitting the balls directly back to fognini; as the quote above points out, he hit a number of his winners in “full sprint.”

maybe rafa did that here or there, but fognini played lights out.


AndyMira Says:

To Alonatp,i know he can’t hit harder or run faster anymore..he’s almost 30!His uncle said as much but what i didn’t understand is his unwillingness to try new tactics..say be more aggressive..hit the ball left right..make your opponent run a little bit,make them unbalanced then maybe points will come to you easily..rafa traditionally a defensive player but right now he can’t afford to that anymore otherwise other players will eat him alive like today!


Wog Boy Says:

“To Alonatp,i know he can’t hit harder or run faster anymore..he’s almost 30!”
I will disagree, politely. I am watching Roger this year and just two years ago we were talking how he was a step slawer than before, playing wrong tactics (which was true) and so on, then he hired Edberg, change the racquet, change his game plan, and look at him now, he truly plays his best and most complete tennis at the age of 34, and hr is NOT slower. Rafa needs drastic change and new approach but he won’t do that, he doesn’t have a guts to cut his ties with Uncle Toni.


Michael Says:

I do not frankly think Rafa was a threat to Novak with the kind of form he is in at the moment. Novak would have just rolled him out in no time. When he could beat him convincingly when Rafa was at his peak, why should anybody have a whimper of suspicion when these two meet on Court especially when Rafa is so much sapped short of confidence !!

This is the first time Rafa is losing after being two sets to love and this is certainly not a good sign. It only shows that Rafa now-a-days is just not able to sustain the stamina levels that is required for a five set match. Naturally, Rafa sweats out profusely taking out a lot of energy and this also has a bearing in the later stages of his career when he is no more young !!


Jock-KatH Says:

Hmmph – Everyone has helpfully contributed to the Rafa v Fabio match – I was up at 5.00am UK time and looked at the stats and Rafa seemed to be set for a 4 set victory………..

Can only assume Fabio brought one his “out-of-this-world fabulous performances” there-after. He did that to Murray at UK v Italy DC – so if it’s any consolation to Rafa fans, don’t let it define Rafa’s return to the game.

Will be very surprised if Fabio can retain this level beyond his next match.


Mr. Larvey Says:

@Michael,

Not the first time for Rafa to lose from 2-0 situation. The first time in a slam thou….


Michael Says:

Thanks Larvey for your clarification. I only meant the majors !! I know that he lost Miami earlier !!


nits Says:

I hope Toni should understand now his time is up.He should see the example of djokovic & federer.


nits Says:

I think nadal’s downfall started after 2014 Australian open. Although he managed to win FO, but have s European clay season was below par. Then came the injuries making matter worse.


nits Says:

Although die hard optimist will say his level is improving.But bottom line is he lost match from winning position.


nits Says:

Nadal needs a new coach & a sports psychologist too.


Tennis Vagabond Says:

I CAN’T BELIEVE I MISSED THIS!

I checked the score, saw it was a routine win coming for Rafa and went to bed!

ARRRG.

I can’t comment on the match (although ignorance usually doesn’t stop me), but I would be very concerned for Rafa’s psyche after this. He was, mentally, in a very negative frame of mind all year. Until the last few weeks. Now this. And this is Rafa’s best hard court tourney, right?

Novak’s draw is looking better and better… except we’re going to have to start taking Cilic seriously soon. At #9 he’s the highest ranked player left in Novak’s half.


FedExpress Says:

i quite like and enjoy this new nadal. shows that he is human after all.


nits Says:

@Fedexpress touche touche!!!!


Tennis Vagabond Says:

OK, forget ignorance I’ll comment anyway. I keep seeing, after EVERY Rafa loss this year: Rafa played really well, the other player was just unstoppable.

I don’t buy it. Lightning doesn’t strike that many times. When you have a weak second serve, and predictable, short, non-threatening groundstrokes, you can make the other guy look like a superstar. Add in Rafa’s amazing defense, and the other guy has to make a few superstar shots to win the point, without too much danger of a Rafa winner, the match starts to look like an epic.

Fognini had not won a hard court match THIS YEAR before this tourney: “Fognini, who was 0-7 on hardcourts this season entering the US Open…”

But now 3-0 vs Rafa in 2015?? Bizarre.


mat4 Says:

I watched the second set, then, when Fabio lost it, I fell asleep. And then I woke up and saw they were playing the fifth set. Tried to watch, fell asleep again.

But, from what I saw, Fabio played out of his mind. Last night, Chardy and Fognini reminded us that the USO is a faster court, and that one can hit flat shots with good effects. That’s what they did, and how they beat Ferrer and Nadal.

Of course, there were differences: Chardy, a big guy with a great serve had, in his good serve/return combo, a key element to develop the rest of his game, something that gave him confidence in his shots. Fabio had to rely on his speed, his movement, something he didn’t do as often as he should.

From there, in the set I watched he was either brilliant either abysmal. He went for his shots from any position on the court, and the moment he managed to read Rafa’s serve he was in the match.

Rafa is in good form, but plays the wrong way. With a shorter short and a tight shirt, he looked monstrous — like a boxer, a weight lifter. Big muscles everywhere. He was fast, and he hit hard. He hasn’t lost speed (Linford Christie was at his best at 30), nor stamina.

But his problem was (Oh, thank you, thank you unca Toni! You are the only man able to destroy such a great player!) that he had no clue whatsoever what he should do on the court. He has only one, very predictable strategy: hit CC when defending, and run around his BH to attack. But confronted with fast, flat balls, he hit too short, time and time again, too slow, and his balls were rebounding just high enough to let Fabio slap them with power and accuracy. He doesn’t know how the flatten the ball — shots that should be outright winners were returned very often. He hit ferociously but with too much spin, and wasn’t able to adapt his game, something he did a few years ago.

Fabio looked amazing, but, let’s write it, it was so easy to anticipate Nadal’s one dimensional game.

I wrote that Rafa has to change his team. The only solution Toni has found is to get back to… you know what, while he had to work on the basics. I am more and more persuaded that everything Rafa has changed in his game in 2010, 2013, was by his own (with the work of Oscar Borras on his serve), without input from his anti-coach.

As a Novak fan, I’m fine with that. I even guess that Fed, Novak and Andy have made a fund to pay unca Toni a substantial few thousands every month, something to put aside for the old days — you never know. He’s their Trojan horse in Rafa’s team. But, we could remember the sad story of Arantxa Sanchez, and see that the destructive role of the family is not something that happens solely in Australia or France.


Jock-KatH Says:

According to Naveen Ullal @ ibtimes.co.uk, Garcia-Lopez beat Tomas Berdych at the 2017 French Open -

if nothing else, we’ll know who to put a bet on……….


Ben Pronin Says:

I watched 3 sets before going to sleep. I thought Nadal was hitting the ball well, and even serving pretty well. But his serve was very predictable. And based on how often Fognini anticipated Nadal’s shots, his ground game was pretty predictable, too.

I thought his forehand looked good, but his backhand was not consistent enough. He was desperate to hit forehands. But when he had to hit his backhand too many times in one rally, he’d usually miss.

Over 3 sets, he actually played ultra conservative. He had 14 winners to 7 errors. I believe Fognini was allowing that because he had like 27 winners and 27 errors. So Fognini was either ending points with crazy winners or 12 mile errors. But when he stopped missing for a few games in the third set, he won. So I’d venture to say he was able to string more games in the next 2 sets.

But this can’t be an acceptable loss for Nadal. Just a horrible way to end the grand slam season. Up 2 sets and a break. Up a break in the 4th. And whatever break mania happened in the fifth. He let the match slip right through his fingers. The difference between last night and just 2 years ago is huge. 2 years ago, even if he started playing worse, he would’ve been able to press his opponent just hard enough to edge him out.

Not only that, but he also didn’t encounter this problem of playing well for a few sets then dipping. Same thing happened against Coric. Played well, dipped, but pulled through. This time he didn’t pull through.

I have no idea how his sudden consistency issues came about.


Tennis Vagabond Says:

Mat4, its ridiculous to disrespect a coach who’s player had won 14 grand slams.
It may be time for a change, but if Toni is a destructive coach, we should all have such poor mentoring in our life.

In fact, one could argue Toni is the most accomplished coach in tennis history. Is he the best coach ever? I doubt it. But if he’s a bad coach, what would Rafa have won with a GOOD coach? 30 slams?


Margot Says:

@TV
But at what cost?


Tennis Vagabond Says:

Margot, I don’t understand your question.


tennisfansince76 Says:

@mat4 excellent analysis as usual but I’d quibble with one point. I don’t think nadal’s stamina is what it was. Nadal played well the first two sets but even when he was up a break in the third it seemed to me that he’d lost a half step and some pop off of his shots. As you know margins are small in the men’s game. I thought then that if Fabio can hang in get a break back he can make it a competitive match.


mat4 Says:

@TV:

OK, let’s see what uncle Toni real results are — not Rafa’s results, otherwise you could also argue that Boris Becker is an outstanding coach (and he could well be a better coach than Toni, something that isn’t difficult to be).

You have a pupil that is docile, willing to work, with tremendous speed, and a great physical potential overall. He’s ambidextre, something that is very important. He also has no financial problems to face to pursue his tennis career.

First, you don’t learn him to move the right way, so he isn’t well placed for his FH and has to hit it often at head height. He develops a peculiar movement that will hurt his lower back and his knee (since he rotates on the wrong hip and leg) but you do nothing nor then, nor later, even when he changes his motion and flatten a bit this shot, to improve his chances for a longer career.

Then, you never teach him how to slice.

You never develop his strategic acumen, letting him play always the same game, whatever the surface.

You don’t correct an elementary error when serving, so his serves remains very weak. When somebody help does it in your stead, you sue him not to reveal the truth.

The technique of your player changes up and down in the course of his career, without plan, and without assimilating fully the changes. Nadal has to intuitively rediscover his footing each year for each surface. He regresses as often as he progresses. And faced with the toughest crises in his career, you don’t have a plan of changes, of improvements to pursue.

Everybody believes that you are a great motivational coach, although it’s clear that anybody could motivate a player with Rafa’s fighting spirit.

Does the word “uncoach” exist in English? If not, it should be created just for Toni Nadal.


mat4 Says:

And the list is long…

Although your player is very gifted at the net, you don’t develop any pattern to use it effectively.

You don’t develop any serve/third shot pattern to finish points. Rafa doesn’t anticipate the return, but moves instinctively to his right.

So, what are his results? Not Rafa’s results, but Toni’s?


kriket Says:

The general consensus among the commentators is that Rafa’s strongest weapon – his forehand – isn’t clicking. I don’t see anyone here mention that. I too, went to sleep after Rafa was up 2-0 and a break in the third, only to wake up to learn Fognini beat him in 5 sets. Prior to the match I thought Fognini might win, but wouldn’t bet on it after he was 2 sets in a hole. He overcame it though.
I think Fognini is a greater threat to Novak than Rafa of nowadays, therefore I’m not sure that it’s better for him to play Fognini rather than Rafa.


mat4 Says:

@TF76:

I thought it was the heat/humidity. Goffin retired the same day. Ferrer look spent in the fourth set, and Chardy was wobbling, Djokovic looked slow and asleep on the court.

So I guessed that the weather conditions were very heavy in the evening too, but you could be right too. He looked tired in some previous matches this spring too.


Tennis Vagabond Says:

Mat, you paint the picture of a very bad result from Toni’s coaching. And yet, the man who has won the second most slams in the open era seems to have done alright.

Sorry, but your theory is completely overshadowed by facts. There is only one objective measure in sports, results.

You rarely say ridiculous things Mat, but you have this time.


Margot Says:

@TV
1)Rafa seems under stress to me, those tics/twitches/OCD seems to be getting worse.
2)So many injuries due to his style of play. What will he be like at 40?
I hold Toni responsible for these.
I also agree with matt. Rafa is an exceptional sportsman. Who knows what kind of a tennis player a different, more caring, more listening, more flexible coach might have produced?
I also firmly believe coaches should not be family members. It’s too confined, too spider’s web, unhealthy psychologically etc.
Of course Rafa might say being CLAY GOAT is worth it, and then, so be it.


Tennis Vagabond Says:

Wow, I can’t believe the pile-on.
14 slams= a wasted career now.
Undisputed greatest clay court player of all time.
2nd most slams of all time. Meh, should have done better!

Do you realize how many elite kids are out there? How many great natural athletes? You CANNOT be one of the greatest tennis players of all time with a coach that has hurt your game. I’m sorry, I don’t believe it. You need to have elite talent, world class drive and work ethic, and elite coaching. I just don’t believe any player in today’s ultra-competitive sport can rise to the absolute peak of the sport with anything so fundamental “wrong” in that equation.

That unorthodox groundstroke Toni taught has won him 14 slams and brought him to #1 in the world.


Tennis Vagabond Says:

If this career was wrecked by Toni, I wonder what a GOOD rafa career would have looked like?


madmax Says:

Don’t know who said that “this is it” for Rafa, but I don’t see it that way at all. i think it is a bit short-sighted to be honest.

I didn’t see the match, but I would imagine Gypsey and Okie are scratching their heads right now.

I remember when this started to happen to Roger, so I think that you just have to keep things in perspective. Nadal is not having an easy time of it… that is for sure. Inner strength came from Fabio, who could have seen that? No one.

Great champions will reflect and work it out, he will work it out. Give him some time.

May be he needs to get married! (seriously, may be he needs a bit more stability – though he is probably as stable as he can ever be).

This is what Russell Fuller said about the match. It sounds like a cracker.

Okie/Gypsey, don’t be sad for too long. Rise above it. Phoenix from the Ashes, and all that stuff.

BBC Sport tennis correspondent Russell Fuller

“It may be the first time Nadal has ever relinquished a two-set lead in a Grand Slam and the first time he has failed to win a Slam in a year since 2004, but this is a moment to rejoice in one of the most magnificent and stylish comebacks in US Open history.

A series of breathtaking shots helped Fognini level the match and the final set was exceptional.

Three times Fognini broke and three times Nadal broke back. Fognini then conjured another break with four clear winners and Nadal could find no way back.”

Rafa did not give in. He fought and kept fighting ’til the end of the match.

The hunger is still there and that, is promising.

Very.

It’s when he doesn’t care anymore that he is done.


Giles Says:

So, Rafa lost a match. This seems to be his bleakest year in his career, 2015. The sooner it ends the better for him and all those around him. Don’t knock Uncle Toni. He is the most successful coach in tennis history without question. How many coaches has the great federer had in his career? Too many to count for sure. Toni has guided Rafa through 14 slams and numerous Masters and other tourneys. This is a bad patch Rafa is going through which isnt unique, fed 2013 comes to mind. Rafa will weather the storm and WILL come back, maybe not to his glory days but certainly better than 2015. I have every faith and confidence. We will keep this thread as a reference when he returns to his best.
Vamos Rafa!


jalep Says:

mat4 – Uncle Toni has been an incredibly successful coach for Rafa – who wouldn’t want Rafa’s resume? But I really like your points about the injuries. Successful coach may not mean good coach. He’s a winning coach – tough to discount that part.

The question: does Rafa need a new coach is an explosive one — a lot of debate going on about it everywhere.

Uncle Toni as a Trojan Horse — hilarious…laughed out loud, thanx!

Next thing – Of course I missed the match and just whizzed through my recording just now and they showed repeats of Serena’s win, and only highlights from the 5th set of Fognini v Rafa.

It’s not reasonable for people to expect Fabio to win like that again this tournament. It doesn’t get better than beating Rafa on center court in front of a big crowd. F-Lo will be too anti-climactic after that for Fabio, imo.

Big thanks to Sirius for posting that locker room picture of Fabs kissing Nole’s hand on the other thread!! priceless. Love it, love it. So Fabio, Grande Fabio, Forza!


Giles Says:

Glad you enjoyed Fabio’s win jalep! NOT! :(((


sienna Says:

it is not standing for good sharp tennis with 7 breaks in final set.
clearly level portrayed was mediocre.
Like Nadal is atm mediocre.


tennisfansince76 Says:

@mat4 yes conditions have been hot and humid through out the first 4 days. But think about it. The cornerstone of Rafa’s game is physicality. He ground players down. Players might stay with him early but the demands of handling those heavy topspin shots writhing off the court, getting yanked side to side would take its toll. A good example would be the dimitrov match at last years Australian open. Dimitrov came out serving 130 mph bombs, cracking ground strokes. Took the 1st set had set points in the 3rd didn’t convert. As the match wore on the physical demands of playing Nadal took a toll on Dimitrov. He lost some racquet head speed. He got ground down.
Contrast that to last night. It was Nadal who wore down. Fognini movement was there all match as well as his racquet head speed.


mat4 Says:

@TV:

I don’t know what Nadal’s limits could be, but imagine a Djokovic with Nadal’s power, or a Murray with Nadal’s offensive mindset. That’s what the result should have been.

How many slams would he have won? God knows.

My son is also a fast, skinny lefty, with many problems Rafa probably had as a child. Since I have a court at my disposition, in concert with his coach, I worked with him the last month, to double his training sessions and to improve his game.

We improved tremendously his serve focusing on the trophy position and doing special exercises in less that a week.

Insisting on court positioning, anticipation and shot preparation, we improved his FH vastly. He’s on the cusp to have a versatile and dependant FH, and he manages to play both flat and with a lot of topspin.

A few specific corrective exercises, a plan when practising, and the results are tremendous.

It’s true, today it’s much easier, when you have a lot of instructive materials on ICoach, youtube, and a lot of good tennis books.

When I watch Rafa I see that this kind of work lacks. Compare his evolution in that last five years with the changes in the game of the other “big four”.

Federer lost almost two seasons because of back problems, but he is a completely new player now, at 34. Murray was injured, but he successfully adapted his game to his new condition, and reworked his serve. Djokovic has improved his serve and his FH.

We can all discover what they are working on, what they try to improve — net game, FH, BH serve…

There’s nothing of that kind in Rafa’s case. He’s in full regression. A good coach would have reacted long ago.


jalep Says:

Nole fans/Fabio fans – if you haven’t seen this – have to repost it…

https://mobile.twitter.com/FortyDeuceTwits/status/640023906791870464?p=v


andrea Says:

only some some of the shots from this match and they were all jaw dropping.

bouchard seems to be playing with more grit again. she showed great resolve against cibulkova. i think she gets past vinci, but then faces either the gal that ousted her last year – makarova – or a gal she’s had trouble with mladenovic.


funches Says:

That was one of the best tennis matches I have ever seen.

These people complaining about the breaks of serve either did not watch or are too clouded by Nadal bias (positive or negative)to appreciate mind-boggling shot making. John McEnroe wondered aloud how Fognini ever loses a match.

I am with Jane on this one–Fognini would have beaten almost anyone the way he played last night.


Markus Says:

No, Fognini would not have beaten Djokovic with that kind of play.


Giles Says:

@ jalep. Did you know that stupid pic you posted is from 2014?


madmax Says:

funches,

did you actually watch the match?

I am watching the highlights now. Incredible shot making by BOTH players.


Skeezer Says:

Markus,
Nor Fed.


jalep Says:

Margot. 100% agree with 9:21 am post.


Dantheman Says:

Fantastic match to watch, so much drama! Congrats to Fognini, this match puts him down in the history books being the 1st player in history to beat Nadal from 2 sets down (151 in slams before this). Great heart, great match, great shotmaking.


Josh W Says:

While watching the Nadal-Fognini match, I thought that Fognini didn’t have a chance early on and he was just dialing it in. However, when he won a set, he started to come alive, but I thought Nadal would pull it out. I was happy and surprised when Fognini managed the upset win!

If they both swung that way, Nadal and Fognini would make one attractive couple. I was fantasizing about them the entire match.


Skeezer Says:

The stats once again told the story. If you had told me this is the guy who has won 14 slams today I would have laughed in your face. And he’s in the prime years of Tennis? What a terrible embarrasing couple of years for a supposed GOAT contender. Lets see, so far during the last couple if years he’s lost to wild cards, qualifiers, & teenagers. At least this time it was a #32 seed? Yes, guess he’s improving?
Whats happened is not just all about Rafa, guys have improved and have figured his once dominant one dimensional game out. How come everytime nowadays Rafa gets beat the other guy struck lightning in a bottle? Not true.


mat4 Says:

@TF76:

Unfortunately, I feel asleep after the second set. I’m sorry to have missed the next three, since Fognini was playing exceptional tennis.

Now a long answer.

At the beginning of 2014, when I looked at Rafa’s results and watched a few of his matches, I thought that the new measures adopted by the ATP were taking a toll on his game. We know how certain nutritive complements work: they give more power, more stamina, and, something usually not revealed enough, more confidence.

It seemed to me that Rafa was a little bit slower. Than, the situation became more complicated since he injured his back in Australia, so it became very difficult to be certain on the cause of his slump, and I had doubts again.

After that, he lost against top players in very disputed matches, but he also lost against footsoldiers of tennis with surprising regularity.

We could notice that he was often late on his FH, that he retreated a step or two on this BH (it reveals also that he’s a bit late on the ball), but, overall, it was hard to see what was missing. One round, everything was clicking, the following, nothing worked for him.

The final of Madrid was telling: Murray made him run from left to right the whole match. Nadal lacked power. He tried to be more aggressive, and made a few successful foray to the net, but it was all.

In the meantime, after a period when he seemed leaner, in 2015 he slowly regained his bulky silhouette. I strongly believe that he is overweighted, just like Murray. He can’t bear such kind of weight in longer matches, and, career wise, it’s a problem for his knees. It’s unnatural for him.

Then came RG. I watched him against Sock and against Djokovic. He played better, and I thought then that the decline wasn’t substantial, taking in account that other top players improved, and that he could solve his problems with the help of a good team, developing a more versatile strategy on the court and reverting to the technique he had in 2010, 2011, and some shots he played in 2013. Here, quality work on the serve was essential, and a training on fast surfaces focused on flattening the FH (with a arm motion finishing on his right shoulder, something you can see he played in 2010).

But now, I really don’t have a clue why nothing happens. Rafa is just regressing. His game is more previsible, the puts even more spin in his shots. Although he looks very bulky, there’s no real power in his CC FH, and opponents can take the ball earlier. So, no real idea.


Markus Says:

Yes, Skeezer, neither will that play by Fognini have beaten Federer, maybe not even Murray, or Cilic. Nadal fed Fognini so many shots to hit back for winners.


jalep Says:

No Giles, didn’t know that. Sirius posted that on the match thread, I saw it morning and re-posted it because I love it. Is that Okay with you? Probably not, but so what?


jalep Says:

It’s a “stupid” picture to you but not to everyone universally.

Giles, sorry Rafa lost – did not see that coming.

However, I am a Fognini fan -so…pardon my happiness. It will be brief, I’m sure.


Daniel Says:

Also, Lopez has a huge serve and will use a lot of slices not giving pace to Fognini. Indeed Foggy was unticipating as Nadal hit almost the same. Most of Nadal winner come when he was wrong footing Foogy or not going to his usual cross court on both sides.

There is 3 big tourneys left this year: Shangai, Paris and WTF and I don’t expect him to reacg finals in neither. Alao
If he plays Beijing, Djoko, Murray and some other top tens will be there, Basel, Fed and others. He should go for smaller tournaments because he needs confidence victories and easy wins.

The only positive for his year is that he is healthy and as he hardly played any weekends he is “rested” so he may complete the full season.
Next year I assume he will keep the clay swing in South America and he probably will hope to peak for European clay. He plays only 1 more Slam with 29 and than turns 30 during RG 2016. Fed’s 17 seems out of reach now and he should focus on trying to get competitive for Masters finals and than Slams. The jury is up to him on how he will bounce back from this that is one of his worst defeats ever, just when he was rebuilding hos confidence, the way he lost that will linger.


Daniel Says:

Agree mat4, he seems more bulk. His legs were even bigger this USO


Jack Lewis Says:

It’s really heartening to see the outpouring of love towards Nadal….’s coach.
The notion that through a career a tennis player might need to change coaches to get a different view to his game, get new tactics and insights is obviously completely nuts.
Why add to your game when you can just listen to the same advice all your career? Obviously telling a coach who is a family member to take a back seat is probably harder than a regular coach…
It’s obvious from the few times Nadal has been seen at the net that he is naturally gifted for it, why not develop that aspect and cut down on the points length? How about trying at least not to stay so far from the baseline all the time? Nadal is a machine and won by being a terminator type machine, but that sort of play can not work forever no matter who you are.
And to be clear, Nadal’s amazing accomplishments are HIS own, not Tony’s. Nadal was enough of a special athlete that pretty much any coach could look like a genius. But the sort of play, running down everything, more defensive than anything is not something a coach can take credit for with a straight face.


Daniel Says:

Question: Who would Djoko prefer to face in final? Fed, Murray or Stan

1 – I think he doesn’t want to see Stan the othersie anytime soon. Beat him in Garros and last year AO, won 2 Slams out of last 7 and is undefetaed in Slams finals. Even tough Djoko’s HxH is still huge and on gast HC, Stan is playing Djoko hard in big matches

2 – Fed. althout Djoko won last 2 Slams Wimby versus Fed and big matches Fed also is the one who has the most wins out of him recebtly in hos super phase: Shangai 2014, Dubai 2105 finals and Cincy 2015. All fast Hard courts. Also of Fed reaches finals he will be playing great returning to finals since 2009 on a 11 match winning streak, probably with a win over Murray or Stan in semis. Last 2 times Djoko beat Fed in USO was in 5 sets saving MP. Crowd support will be huge for Fed, maybe even more than Wimby.

3 – Murray. Plays him tough and long matches and recebtly got a win in Montreal. Beat Djoko in USO final before. And of reaches final would have most likelly beat Stan and Fed (who is in form so far).

But out of the three I still think he would prefer to meet Murray due to his last 8-1 and 3 out of 4 Slam wins since including last year USO.

Stan on paper could be the “easiest” as he could play hor and cold and could have a bad match in finals. But hte way Djoko mentioned That he is not worried about playing Federer in press shows me that he knows Fed is dangerous right now.

Want to know what you all think, who he would prefer to play or be the “easuest” opponent.


Daniel Says:

Kivitova could be a match for Serena, she has a great serve and return agressive as well. Tow atributes that makes Serena what she is. Also she can keep it up from the back court.


Frankie Says:

His game has been based on speed and strength and now that both are gone he is vulnerable. When he says he will just work harder, what does that mean? Eight hour practises? What will that accomplish except wear him out further.
I am afraid he is at a crossroads. Either he accepts that his game / body can no longer win him big matches and he lingers in the top 20 for a few more years or he packs it in.
RealisticAlly I don’t see a new coach helping much.


funches Says:

Nishikori beat Djokovic last year, and Fognini is playing every bit as well if not better than Nishikori was last year.

Heck, Seppi gave Djokovic a battle for all three sets yesterday. I expect Djokovic to reach the final, but if Fognini recovers physically from last night and gets past Lopez, who will test his return of serve in a way Rafa did not, he will have a shot to beat Djokovic.


NK Says:

While not a Nadal fan, I do feel bad for him. Too bad he is unable to get out of his one dimensional game. Throughout the match, Nadal played from the baseline waiting for the short ball. This tactic will still win him many matches against lesser players, but he will not be able to beat Djoker, Murray, Wawrinka, even the “new” Federer.

He needs to reinvent himself to be competitive and win grand slam matches.


Markus Says:

@daniel 11:54: Federer. Roger is playing great but to win 3 sets against Djokovic may be a struggle. It’s a function of age. Murray and Stan can keep up physically with Djokovic. Stan may also be starting to get under Nole’s skin.


courbon Says:

Daniel-I think Novak would like play Ruben Benelmans if possible…
Joking aside, I think your analysys is spot on.I think Murray would be preferable choice, agree on that one.


Markus Says:

Berdych just lost the first set tiebreaker to Agut. Poor Tomas, it looks like all his adrenaline have been zapped in that breakthrough win over Nadal at the Australian. He’s as dead as Nadal.


Markus Says:

Not Agut,…it’s Garcia-Lopez.


Skeezer Says:

Can anyone share why his speed and strength are suddenly gone? Mmmm…
Don’t believe an appendix op would cause all this. He has been saying his knees are fine……. But he is not as massive looking as he once was.
—-
Re ; Fed
All this great play by Fed is awesome. But want to see how he looks after a 5 setter…


Markus Says:

Mmmm indeed!


funches Says:

If Federer keeps playing like this, he won’t have a five-setter.


mat4 Says:

@Skeez:

It’s the key question. Why has he suddenly lose some speed, and become leaner in 2014? Why is Marion Bartoli stating that, power wise, he is only the shadow of his former self? How come he has again changed his overall appearance recently?

Since we are all amateurs, here, let’s ask a professional. Let’s say… Yannick Noah?


jalep Says:

Johanna Konta took the 1st set and is about to beat Petkovic!

Surprise of the US Open wta bracket! Konta.
Petra Kvitova in great form so far.

Gasquet still looking strong. Bernie Tomic seems not to have recovered well from the 5 setter with Hewitt.

Gasquet wins 64 63 61


Daniel Says:

I said a while ago, we are in a transition phase. I expect major changes in top 10 soon, Ferrer seems on his way don, Berdych also is not that consistent in Quarters and one or another Semis as was the case. Lost generation seems they lost this year: Kei, Dimi and Raonic. Cilic will be out of top 10 after USO. There is the big 3 and Wawa when he decides to play.

Djoko has to take this opportunity and take as much Slam as possible. He won 3 of last 5, if he wins the open will be 4 out of 6 and 10. Suddenly with Nadal sucked in 14 that he could reach Sampras and Nadal in 2017. That’s why this USO is that important. If Fed wins, unquestionable GOAT with 18 which may never be reached.If Murray wins he can start being the contestant for Novak we all are expecting for some time. Wawa may not be #1, but winning a second Slam this year will be huge and could people him to more wins. Djoko needs to close the door on all this 3 contenders by winning and sending the cear message that he is here to rule, having another year with 3 Slams. Plus taking the USO monkey of his back. Wimbledon he already is established and RG he has at lest 2 more real shots. He is the best clay courter of the last 2 years with no RG titles: 2 finals there and 3 Masters on clay won. Hedgiest needs to translate to RG win (piece of cake:-)


Giles Says:

mat4. You are indeed a nasty old crock always looking for conspiracy theories. Twisted and horrible person to say the least. Rafa’s appearance has changed? Really? All in your twisted head of yours. He is the same, Nothing’s changed appearance-wise. He lost a bit of weight after his op which is natural and that’s it. How’s your EGG lover doing? Still basking in the POD? Nothing changes there. Hope he gets knocked out!


jatin Says:

Feeling sad for Rafa. He was dictating the play for the first 2 sets and was leading in the third. When i saw the scores after some 30 minutes. They were playing the 4th set and then the 5th. Couldn’t believe the outcome.
Rafa must try new things now if he wants to be in the competition. He is struggling against almost every player at slams ( no matter the seed). He should come to the net more often as he has some really great hands. But as i said earlier he and Uncle toni knows better. And yeah, i don’t think its Toni fault at all. He was the man who urged rafa to use his left hand even though he was righty. He taught him how to use huge forehand topspins with his Left hand which turned out to be the most lethal weapon against a Player who was dominating everything.
This phase comes in every payer’s life. So its natural.
Lets see how it goes for RAFA from here. I wish him well. Vamous


Margot Says:

And with a large slice of good fortune and some great serving, Jo Konta is through!
Go Jo!


jatin Says:

Fed is on the court. Time for some SABR attack ;)


jalep Says:

Margot, Jo will play Petra next. yikes!

Estonian qualifier Kontaveit is also a nice surprise – she’ll play Venus Williams next round.


jatin Says:

Its happening rather quick. Already 3-0


brando Says:

Missed the match completely. And what’s more: ONLY just saw the result after what most be 12 plus hours after the match. Reaction? Congratulations to fognini. 70 winners is a crazy stat. My boy rafael? Was NEVER going to win the event. To me looked like he was having to fight hard just to meet Novak for a near certain beat down from novak so in that sense: he’s done himself and his fans a favour by losing in what was thrilling match I imagine as opposed to a complete humiliation. The loss is bad but it has ZERO sting to it: rafa has clearly been below par all year. The positive is: there’s just too, too much evidence that suggests rafa needs to change things if he wants to improve. It’s clear that he cannot continue with his old routine. And that’s where its at for me with rafa: he decides for a change= he makes the best of the final chapter of his career. Keeps things the same= more of the same and a Sampras esque end in store (without a slam win). Ultimately: he’s a legend regardless so feeling sorry for rafa is not the call of the hour. The call is: will he finally give in to reality and accept he needs to shake things up. Personally: I don’t envisage a change at all. As a fan: it’s just acceptance and moving on. It’s been way too anxiety ridden seeing rafa play lower ranked players, I feel for him since he’d likely be even more anxiety ridden. This result is a relief from experiencing a future beatdown. Here’s hoping it’s a blessing in that rafa answers the call for a change. It’s all on him now.


Margot Says:

@jalep
Eek! Hasn’t got a snowball in hell’s chance against Petra but has had such a grand run. Jumped 39 places and is in the process of taking over from Watson as British No 1.


FedExpress Says:

fed moonballing like there is no tomorrow

windy in arthur ashe?


jatin Says:

Some really nice shots by philip.
But 4-1


FedExpress Says:

if GGL had a brain…


FedExpress Says:

fed struggeling a bit in the baseline excganges. cant hit through


jatin Says:

Serve and volley tactics in play from fed. Loving it
5-2


FedExpress Says:

fed serving for the set


FedExpress Says:

what the hell has happnened to berdych lately.he had only one job.


jatin Says:

First set in the bag.


Colin Says:

I’m losing track of who said what, and I can’t be bothered scrolling back. Who said Andy is overweight? That’s the funniest statement I’ve seen for some time. His legs look strong, but they need to be with all the running he does.

The idea that Uncle Toni has been bad for Rafa’s health is one I’ve entertained for a long time. Not his statistical reccord,no, but his health, yes.His periodic absences from the game through injury didn’t start when he was a veteran with countless matches under his belt.They started when he was still in his teens (2004: stress fracture to an ankle).


FedExpress Says:

fed forgot to tennis


FedExpress Says:

fed has been sub par tbh


Margot Says:

Colin: Matt4. He’s said it before. I wouldn’t worry, he’s a Nole supporter and against that beanpole Kate Moss would look obese!


Rishi Says:

Margot….LOL at your 1:44 comment


jatin Says:

Fed breaks. 2-1 ;)


FedExpress Says:

i feel fed will get broken today


jatin Says:

What a game by philip.. 0-40


FedExpress Says:

hahahhahahaha

broken


jatin Says:

Philip breaks back.. 2-2
Its the first time fed got broken after turning 34


FedExpress Says:

kohli has become a legend


courbon Says:

My only objection about Murphy’s look, is that he is so pale and white.With all that time spending in Miami, you think he would get some colour?
Otherwise, he looks OK to me…hairdresser is in order though.


FedExpress Says:

fed playing shiit


jatin Says:

Some breathtaking defense by fed. Showing his all court tennis. Breaks again.
3-2


Rishi Says:

@FedExpress….would you please relax? It takes time to adjust from night to day matches.


FlyingDoctor Says:

looks like firts 2 matches made federer a little bit rusty.same happened to djokovic yesterday.i think he gets through this easıly


jatin Says:

Philip is a great test for roger. And so far fed is upto the task


mat4 Says:

@Colin, Margot:

I stick to that opinion. It’s not Andy’s natural weight, and I guess that in tennis, where stamina is as important as speed, losing 3 to 5 kg could be very good for him.

I hope he won’t do it.

Novak, on his side, lacks power.

It’s difficult to find the balance, it’s clear.


jatin Says:

Fed serving for the second set


jalep Says:

Was thinking the same, FlyingDoctor @ 1:59 pm


jatin Says:

A nearly perfect first set followed by not so good second.
But its 6-3,6-4. Saw some great defense along with some great forehands by fed. Wish to see more SABR returns but philip is rarely missing first serves.


Margot Says:

Courbon: Oi!
Andy has classic Celtic colouring – red hair, white skin.
Lovely curly whirly hair he has….much better than…ahem…the toilet brush look…;)


Flyer Says:

Fed up 2 sets – good for him – seems to be having a bit of problem adjusting to day conditions – not as sharp today.

Kohli is a good solid player so he obviously has good deal to do with the bit of “off” play from Roger.


FedExpress Says:

fed is off


jatin Says:

What a game by philip. Breaks fed. lead 2-0


courbon Says:

Margot, loveley whirly hair? Sure, great look for 5 year old girl auditioning for ‘Annie’ musical…
Toilet brush?? I’ll get you for this one next time …


jatin Says:

A nice comeon by fed. Breaks back


MIa0007 Says:

Finally, some justice !!!!!!!!!!!! FAbio has always been a great player. Those responsible for seeding etc. always kept him away from the “big four” in majors. It was clear that Fabio was the better player. Hope he goes all the way. Loved it.


jane Says:

“Stan may also be starting to get under Nole’s skin”

Those 2 are really good friends, actually.


jatin Says:

Philip is playing some really good tennis.

Leads 3-2


FedExpress Says:

for a player who had no problem serving before the match he strugllges a lot today


jatin Says:

WOW… WHAT A POINT that was by fed


jatin Says:

Philip is pushing fed. But he is coming with the goods :)
3-3


jane Says:

sorry margot, just noticed your question from 2:40 am now. yes, it has happened before. someone on twitter posted this stat:

“Djokovic 1 blown 2 sets to 0 lead
Nadal: 2 blown leads
RF: 4 blown leads”

——————

jalep ha that’s a funny photo. thanks for posting. i think novak and foggy get along alright. not sure about rafa and fabio; the handshake was chilly, but that may’ve been just because of how hurt rafa was feeling at the end. mind you, they have some history this year on the court, with brazil and hamburg, matches i didnt see but which were apparently dramatic.

—————

cool stat for novak fans – with the win over seppi, he’s tied sampras in grand slam wins:

.@DjokerNole ties Sampras on #GrandSlam match wins list: #Federer 293 Connors 233 Agassi 224 Lendl 222 Emerson 209 Djokovic, Sampras 203
3:13 PM – 4 Sep 2015 from Florida, USA

————

daniel, i think novak knows ANY of those 3 guys can be very difficult and he wouldn’t underestimate any of them. he just had a win over stan at cincy,, whereas he just lost finals to andy and fed.

but he still has a few more matches before the final so i am sure he’s not jumping the gun. cilic or tsonga could both be really tough in the semis. and neither f-lo or foggy will be easy outs if they play their best. f-lo really likes fast courts. he’s been playing well since cincy. one match at a time for me..


jalep Says:

Well Berdych is having to work a bit too. G-Lo got a set. Tomas seems fine now.

Kohls is a trickier opponent than what Fed has faced so far. And Fed’s not on today.

Speaking of weight – Federer appears exceptionally lean. Maybe it’s the tan.


Daniel Says:

Fed serving for the match and Isner for second set. Looks like it will be Fed x Isner R16.


jatin Says:

Fed wins by 6-3,6-4,6-4
Decent performance by fed. Played well when it matters the most especially in the break points. So i am pretty pleased with his performance as philip is one of the tougher guys out there.


jane Says:

funches, you’re right about the seppi match. some have said djoko didnt play great but seppi hit almost 40 winners in 3 sets. he was bringing it.


Daniel Says:

And Berdych x Gasquet set also. Don’t know wht but picked Gasquet to beat Berdych and face Fed in Quarters. He is having some positive results and can get back to top 10 soon.


jalep Says:

jane, really liked that NYTimes video/audio of the courts where players grew up playing. thanks.


jane Says:

wow gasquet just squashed tomic! who does he play next, potentially? very interesting.

also i see berdych got by g-lo.

the “old guard” still hanging in. lead by fed of course.

—-

hope kvitova can keep playing well. i agree jalep; she could actually – maybe? – challenge serena. especially if she reaches that level she reached when she won wimbledon the second time. she was zoning!


Rishi Says:

Federer vs Isner it is….Vesely retired hurt.


jatin Says:

Next up.. John isner… Gonna be a tough match again.


the DA Says:

Broken twice by Kohlschreiber. Hmmm


jalep Says:

Picked Gasquet over Berdych too. But not sure that was such a good idea – Berdych was hitting well those last 2 sets today. Gasquet has had more hours on court – Kokkinakis woulda won had he not cramped out. Haase match went 4 sets. Berdych has won in straights all matches but today.

That’s a pick I flip-flopped several times.


jane Says:

sorry for all the posts, just getting caught up on reading/scores.

gasquet/berd could be interesting. they are 6-6 h2h!!

jalep – yeah wasn’t that a cool piece? i loved all those visuals of their mostly humble beginnings – the courts where they played as kids. very neat to see. :) also interesting to read little facts, like how judy started a tournament for andy to play in, etc.


Wog Boy Says:

jane,
Berdych match was nice to watch, so many nice, deep and clean shots by both players.


jane Says:

i missed it wog boy. but i know g-lo is not an easy opponent to beat. sometimes he can play beautifully, so it’s not surprising that he made it tough for tomas for a couple of sets, if not the whole match.

i still haven’t seen tomas’ outfit but i heard it’s … something else?


jane Says:

more twitter lore … “Fun stat: Rafael Nadal covered more ground yesterday vs Fognini (3911.5 mts) than RF has covered in 3 rounds combined (3771.3 mts).”

too much running for rafa!

also what happened on a 2nd serve point from fed? did he his phillip with it or something?


jalep Says:

jane, Bernie was dead in the water – completely spent and stiff. His legs must have felt like dead weight. I do know how that feels.

It’s interesting that at 22 he isn’t recovering as well as I expected he should. Seems he should have an advantage over 29 year old Gasquet. But Gasquet is fitter – maybe fitter than ever. Maybe. Gasquet did sweat buckets this week — the advantage I guess would be in understanding what needs to be done, knowing your body and being experienced, also having the discipline to do it; that’s the recovery advantage at 29 in this crazy physical modern game of tennis.


jalep Says:

Where did you find that stat about how far they run, jane?


Ben Pronin Says:

Kerber and Azarenka are putting on a freaking show. Incredible winners by both players.


Wog Boy Says:

jalep,
You can find it if you have USO app, they give all the stats though I found the app lousy, Roger covered more ground than Khol today.


jane Says:

jalep that stat was posted on twitter by Juan José Vallejo. love his stats and analysis. he writes for the likes of usa today and rolling stone now – on sports – but used to blog at the changeover.


Wog Boy Says:

^^ I read it wrong way, Roger covered less ground.


jane Says:

oh and thanks for the intel on bernie. i wondered if gasquet was zoning or what.


Ben Pronin Says:

Azarenka has reeled off 4 straight games and is serving for the match. It’s great to see her playing well again.


jalep Says:

Oh thanks jane and Wog Boy.
I dozed off…

Woke up to the screams and howls of Vika and Kerber. But I don’t mind the noise. It is great to see Vika fighting and playing well. Kerber is tough too. But I would like Vika to win this!


jane Says:

going to a 3rd jalep… are you done nights now for a while?


jalep Says:

Yeah, it’s Wed. Thur, Fri 12 hr nights’, jane.
Just being lazy today – haven’t slept. just a nap.

Was pretty fired up when I checked scores last night and saw Fabio beat Rafa in a 5 setter. Didn’t expect it. Sorry for Rafa and fans. There was a score to settle from Hamburg. Fabio didn’t like Fabio taking so much time and tried to let Fabio know – there were words on a changeover – Rafa waved Fabs off and told him where to go. hahahaha… typical Fabio.


jalep Says:

Edit:
Fabio didn’t like Rafa taking… and tried to let Rafa know…

see? not even coffee helps at this point. But trying to stay awake for Vika match.


chris ford1 Says:

Jalep – Thanks for the pic of Nole and Fog. Djokovic gets along very well with all the Italian players, it seems. The pic of Fabio kissing the hand of the love-besotted, near fainting Nole was made for Fog’s fine lover Flavia Panetta. Who was RFLMAO when she saw it.
============
As a few people have said, the match should be an occasion where the media praised the amazing night’s performance by Fognini as much as they dwelt on Rafa – but they didn’t. It seems all they wanted to do was spotlight Rafa – not Fabio’s heart, nerves, shotmaking brilliance in coming from 2 sets and a break down to a Legend..

=========================
Cinderella girl Joanna Konta…Having a great tournament. Born in Sydney to Hungarian immigrants. Moved to Britain 10 years ago. Represented Australia as a junior, the UK after she turned 21.
Hopefully no flash in the pan like Melodie Oudin. Brit is 5’11″, a powerful hitter, and pretty fast.

The “Other Cinderella out of nowhere” is Anett Kontveit. A seriously curvy blonde Estonian, just 19. 5’10″, who plays Venus next. She beats Venus, the media will be “discovering her” in short order.


jalep Says:

oofff! Kerber is not going to lose. wow. People that downgrade women’s tennis should be watching this match.


jane Says:

^ yes this is a good match jalep!

cf1 ” It seems all they wanted to do was spotlight Rafa – not Fabio’s heart, nerves, shotmaking brilliance”

this is a shame. i really feel like fabio deserves the most credit for this win. it was amazing.

i would say the opposite about brown at wimbledon. rafa kind of lost that match as much as brown won it.

but i disagree about last night. fabio won it. he grabbed it. he took it. rafa fought till the very end, like rafa of old, and it was REALLY difficult for fabio to believe, to close it out, but his heart and mind really, finally pulled him through.

i think rafa says all this in his presser, essentially. and he should know.


Wog Boy Says:

I wonder if Troicki can lose three in a row after being 2:0 up, please Viktor, try not to make history, not that way.


jalep Says:

Wow, CF1, thanks for the information. It’s even funnier knowing that pic was for Flavia! And Flavia won today too!!!

Didn’t know all that about Konta. But it’s a great backstory. Really like her tennis – attacking, has a great serve, tall enough to be a contender.

Kontviet – have yet to watch her play but luckily she’ll be on my TV tomorrow!! Did follow her progress the past month and was happy to see her in US Open qualies. cheers!


jane Says:

Kerber and Azarenka have already combined for 72 winners in this match, vs only 48 UFEs.


Okiegal Says:

The spotlight is always on Rafa, especially when he loses……That’s the way the media rolls…..Rafa, always good subject matter, me thinks!! Get back home, get to work and persevere. Get your old form back…. it’s possible!! Good luck in the latter months of the year! Hopefully you can make the top 8!! VAMOS!!!

Regarding Fabio, congratulations to him and his fans. It was a spectacular performance and he deserved the win!! The match had me on the edge of my seat…..loved it, even though my guy lost. Better results next time, Rafa!!


jane Says:

what a battle, vika vs kerber!
there have been some good women’s matches at the us open. there were some great ones at wimbledon too. for all the flux of the WTA, there is always still reason to watch.

jalep i was thinking that flavia had a comeback win, perhaps inspired by her love, fabio’s comeback win last night. ;)


jalep Says:

Have to thank you jane and others for posting last night – I have no time at all when at work but on a 3:00 am break read tennis-x. Thinking I need to go look it up on youtube because the news gave nothing of Fognini’s side of the match.

Vika and Kerber match is as good as I guessed it might be! Come on Vika!


Jekedy Says:

Who is for Jane Kerber? I am.


Rishi Says:

2 match points Vika


jane Says:

no probs jalep. it was an exciting match to watch, going along to routinely and then boom! fabio hits some other dimension. watching rafa deal with that, and battle. it was crazy. if rafa came through that it would’ve been a big boost for him i think. but he was just a little too tentative and maybe tired at the end.


Rishi Says:

1 Saved


Rishi Says:

Match Point # 3


jalep Says:

Gotta love Kerber too!


Rishi Says:

5-4 it is….after 5 MP saved


jane Says:

5 MPs fought off?

now, can vika close it out?! crazy level …


Rishi Says:

jalep….I am sure this match has been worth your staying awake

:)


jalep Says:

Kudos to you Okiegal for being so fair. Noticed that last night too :)


Rishi Says:

Meanwhile….Donald Young forces a 5th set for the 2nd time this Open after losing the 1st 2 sets


Rishi Says:

3 MPs on serve….


Rishi Says:

Vika Wins!!!!


Ben Pronin Says:

Best match of the tournament. Let’s go Azarenka!!!


jalep Says:

Risihi – you are right. glad i’m seeing this one!

Feel really bad for Angelique. But happy Vika is back!


jane Says:

wow! now the women can just tell people to shut the hell up about quality of play – what a match!

congrats to vika but to kerber too for her resolve.


FedExpress Says:

what a match!


Okiegal Says:

@Jalep 6:01…..Thanks I appreciate that….you’re a fair poster yourself….we’ve got a few of those types on the forum, which is a good thing!

C’mon Andy, you’re my guy now…..OKIE’s in your corner! Take out Bellucci!!!


mat4 Says:

@Okie:

In my–who knows? perhaps biased opinion–I am a very fair poster too. Yes, I admit, I sometimes let my lowest instincts surface, and I hope for Rafa, Andy, Roger, Stan to lose early against outsiders, and for Novak to win a lot of slams in the weakest possible era, but there’s nothing I can do against such inadmissible feelings… ;-)

BTW, I’m crushed by Bemelmans loss. I was hoping for a Nole-Ruben final.


Okiegal Says:

@mat4……You’re one of the good guys…. simply because of your honesty!! Lol You don’t pull any punches, yeah, I like that in a person. You don’t like Rafa and I don’t like Novak, but I do have an appreciation for him and his awesome ability on the tennis court. If it gets down to Novak and Fed, I won’t have a preference! But if Andy is in the final I will prefer that he wins!! C’mon Andy!!


Colin Says:

I had to get some sleep and so wasn’t up during Andy’s match. I got up for early breakfast not feeling at all confident, and was overjoyed to see he’d beaten Belucci in straights. Although both Fed and Nole would start favourite, I don’t think an Andy win would be set in stone by any means. The overweight/perfectly proportioned Scot could be USO champ again.

Johanna Konta is much derided by Aussies for giving up her Oz nationality, but as she was a child of about 13 on arrival in England, she would hardly have come here alone, would she? Her parents must have moved to the UK.

It’s weird that Aussies get so steamed up on this topic, since most of them are attacking something their own forebears did when migrating from Europe – abandoned the nationality of their birth.

Much as I am pleased with Konta’s progress, I can’t see her troubling Kvitova (who is my favourite player anyway). Petra could beat Williams, and so (less likely) could Stosur, who has, after all, done so before.


danica Says:

And yet, some of Aussies’ tennis players come from Greece (Phillipousis, Kyrgios, Kokkinakis), former Yugoslavia (Dokic, Tomic, Matosevic)…


Wog Boy Says:

@colin & @danica,

Can you give some links and prove that “Johanna Konta is much derided by Aussies for giving up her Oz nationality..”
What a load of crap, I never heard of her until this USO nor I read anything negative about, sorry to tell you Colin but as of lately you sound like an old cranky … Aussies are least arogant and most down to earth nation compare to some other cousin nations, I wonder why there is a long queue in Australian High Commission in London fir Brits wanting to migrate to Australia if it is such bad place to live and the people are so bad, I don’t see any queue in British High Commission in Canberra for Aussies wanted to migrate to UK, not whatsoever!


Jock-KatH Says:

@ Wog Boy – If I was an Aussie, I wouldn’t want to come to the UK either – it’s a tiny island and London is the most populated city in the world according to this year’s stats.

I like my space which is why I live in Scotland – population of slightly over 5 million.

(PS: In 2001-2004 when the UK had a huge influx of refugees and asylum seekers, there was supposedly insufficient accommodation /space /facilities for them in England and proportion-wise the majority were “settled” in Scotland. (I know, latterly, I was there working in a new charity set up to assist).

There’s “breaking” news that 5,000 immigrants from Syria will now be sent to Scotland – as a result of the English Conservatives change of heart….

Hope I haven’t been rambling on – just thought you might be interested…


Wog Boy Says:

JK,
No, you were not rambling, I just don’t like when people are making the things up. Aussies are last one to complain about switching allegiance since they have load of sports representatives who can’t even speak proper english, as for the Phillipousis, Kokkinakis and Kyrgios, that danica mentioned, they are born in Australia, they did not came from Greece, what does it matter where their parents came from, more than one third of Sydney population was not born in Australia!


Daniel Says:

WTF, went to take a shower Djoko was 4-3 serve, came back and he lost set 6-4?!?!?! And now was 0-30 down.


danica Says:

I never said those players were born in Greece. I just implied that so many tennis players have origins elsewhere which is interesting to me.


AndyMira Says:

The nadal conqueror has lost to feli!I thought as much!!What is it with all nadal’s conqueror?Is it meeting with nadal drained all their mentality and physical energy?after they gave everything they’ve got and nothing left to spare for the next opponent?It shows that rafa not only great when he still great but now when he not so great he still do the damage..think about that guys..


Markus Says:

Nice spin, AndyMira. Nadal loses to just about anybody yet still is considered the conqueror of these men. Only in Tennis-x can you find such screwed up logic.


Markus Says:

This is another way to look at it AndyMira: How can anybody call great somebody who loses to all those players who are so easily beaten by just about anybody else they play against?


Giles Says:

Simply put because these journeyman invest everything in a match against Rafa and just don’t have the balls to follow it up.


AndyMira Says:

To Markus..he!he!nice response..but i for once can’t believe that you as a tennis lover[if not rafa's lover]didn’t know that he’s one of the GOAT candidate?How can you disregard that he’s got 14 slam already and he will add to 15 next year..he’s 2nd behind roger[along with sampras of course]didn’t that mere fact make him great?And you should ashamed of yourself just because he’s so fragile this year that doesn’t mean we can belittling his achievement so far.


Margot Says:

Come off it! It frequently happens. Someone plays blow out tennis then immediately goes out next round to a lower ranked, to much gnashing of teeth.


Tennis Vagabond Says:

There are many players known for showing brilliance once in a while and then disappointing for weeks at a time. Fognini has long been known for this, as Gulbis, Monfils, Nalbandian…

When you have to use the defeat of Rafa’s vanquisher as evidence of Rafa’s current strength, you are setting a very low bar for tennis success.

Occam’s Razor: Do not add unnecessary details to any explanation. Rafa lost, and then Fognini lost= Rafa wasn’t good enough to make R4, Fognini wasn’t good enough to make QF.


Markus Says:

AndyMira, read again. I have never belittled Nadal’s achievements at all. He has been losing to many players this year and part of last year. Everybody, tennis lover or not, sees that. It is a fact. The reason whoever loses to Nadal loses the next match is simply because those players are not really good and/or consistent enough to keep winning. And what do you call somebody who loses to that type of player? Great does not apply, would it? And that would be referring to the topic being discussed: Nadal’s losing to somebody who loses the next match. The chances are great that these players would have lost the next match even if it was not Nadal who they beat in the preceding match. We are not talking about Nadal’s whole career which is unequivocally great even if he never wins another match for the rest of his life.


skeezer Says:

In 2015 only, lost to Berrer, Fognini, Milos, Hot Sauce, Dolgo, Brown, Lopez. All outside the top 10 at the time.
All very lucky to have beaten the Clay King? Sorry, I see a pattern, and it’s not pretty. But his streak of losses to these types is probably another all time record of GOAT contenders.


Wog Boy Says:

danica, I will quote you:


danica Says:
And yet, some of Aussies’ tennis players come from Greece (Phillipousis, Kyrgios, Kokkinakis), former Yugoslavia (Dokic, Tomic, Matosevic)…

September 6th, 2015 at 1:40 am”

You explicitly said “come from Greece” when you joined Colin in criticizing Aussies, and that their “origins are elsewhere”, English is not my first language and I am a bit slow, but I still can see the difference between “come” and “origins”.


Wog Boy Says:

^^^
should say…”and NOT that their origins are elsewhere”

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