Nadal Beats Federer for Madrid Title
by Staff | May 16th, 2010, 10:03 pm

Rafael Nadal re-coronated himself as the king of clay on Sunday, defeating world No. 1 Roger Federer 6-4, 7-6(5) in the final of the Mutua Madrilena Madrid Open in Spain.
Nadal closed out a break in the first set, and in the second set benefited when Federer imploded in a cloud of unforced errors late in the tiebreak.
“To be the first player to [win all three ATP World Tour Masters 1000 claycourt tournaments] is unbelievable,” Nadal said. “I would never have dreamed that I would be able to do so. I’m very happy to have won here and it is especially important to have won in Madrid. Beating Roger is always a special occasion. It’s always a very difficult match. And of course winning at home is very special against anyone. So beating him at home is amazing; it’s a dream for me. For me it’s a dream to have won the three [tournaments] before Roland Garros. I want to enjoy that now and we’ll see what happens in two weeks.”

Federer spun his runner-up effort as a positive approaching the French Open where he will defend his championship.

“Considering where I was last week (losing to Albert Montanes in the Estoril semifinals) this has been a major improvement for me,” Federer said. “The fact is I hardly ever play a lefty on clay and nobody as tough as Rafa. So it’s obviously not easy to make that transition and I thought I did it very well today. He came in with tons of confidence having done so well on clay this season, I knew it was going to be tough; but I really believed in my chance. I was maybe a couple points away here and there, but just got broken one too many times today. But I’m pretty happy with the way I played. I’ve played great this week so I definitely come out of this tournament with tons of confidence.”

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95 Comments for Nadal Beats Federer for Madrid Title

Thaidiamond Says:

Not sure the Fed should be happy with his ‘game’ today. He was ‘off’ his A game.

The sad things for ‘tennis’ fans, was the same thing was true for Nadal.

The Madrid final was “Comedy of Errors.”

And this year’s champion was the guy who didn’t screw up last.

dc Says:

This was one of the most pathetic display by either of them and by far, their worst performance when playing each other.

ron Says:

Sour grapes, Fed-heads.

That last whiff by federer was hilarious. Rewind and repeat many times.

Oh, wait..i forgot..he probably wanted to do that!


TGiT Says:

Comedy of errors! Love it.

I have to agree.

When one broke I thought their goes the set and then the other one broke right back.

The funnies moment of course is when Fed made me laugh by missing the entire ball on match point. I laughed so hard I cried.

blah Says:

This clay season has been disappointing. Not even close to being as exciting as last year’s. Hopefully FO will change that.

Kimmi Says:

blah, i agree. most of the top players are not available or slumping. delpo, davy injured. murray, djoko slumping. federer just starting to find his game in the last minutes. roddick, gonzalez sick or injured?

the spanish have been exellent overall but cannot produce exciting matches with rafa for some known reasons..

I am afraid the fact davy and delpo still missing, the complete clay season will be lacking something. Hoping for some new faces like gulbis to give us more great matches…so, lets hope its better at RG.

Wade Says:

I just get the feeling Federer doesn’t care anymore his done and won everything so i guess its hard for him to find any reason to have as much motivation he once had.

On the otherside well done rafa certainly deserved to win all 3 masters in one year astonishing achievement. He is and always will be CLAY KING!!!

Question: Is Roger the only world number 1 to completly miss the ball on championship point? wow

Anna Says:

So glad Rafa got the win in front of the Madrid crowd. Last year Roger twisted the knife a little with his comment “sorry to spoil the party”. Just a teeny weeny bit of sarcasm. Different story this year and happy for it. With Rafa’s momentum, good health and slower clay in Paris I’m looking forward to his best tennis this season.

dc Says:

Fed wouldn’t miss a shot with his eyes shut and now look at this.Nadal did what he had to better than Fed.

Nadal was not impressive either. If he plays like this in FO, he’s not gonna win it. He better take some rest and re-energize.

montecarlo Says:

For every Federer fan watching Federer play Nadal is like watching Titanic and trying to convince yourself the ship won’t hit the gosh darn iceberg this time.

Orville Says:

I wasn’t impressed with Nadal’s performance he looked very tight and Federer did not capitalize off of this. Federer made four errors in a row when he lead 4-2 in the second set tiebreaker to lose the match. I notice a pattern, Roger tends to lose the first set to Nadal and then has to fight back. The way I see it, if Roger wants to beat Nadal he’s got to win the first set to build his confidence. I am disappointed in Roger because he had a chance to extend the match into a third set.

margot Says:

montecarlo@1.23: just so funny, you made me laugh out loud, but alas so true on clay. I’ve got to say I prefer watching Gulbis or Delboy play either of them on clay, at least then you don’t know whose gonna win.
As an observer, love ’em both for very different reasons, gotta agree with most of the posters here, not a classic was it? Both seemed so tight, so many unforced errors so many unconverted break points etc. But, nonetheless Rafa has 3 in a row and that’s an amazing accomplishment.
puckbandit: cheers for that, it’s a gr8 nom de plume.

guy Says:

federer goes on to claim french open is the only thing that matters in the clay season, essentially dismissing 3 major tournaments and nadal’s pretty amazing achievement.

the guy is all class, isn’t he?

pro rafa Says:

well…. some good games and some bad ones by both these stalwarts…. to me the best shot of the match was Rafa’s…. that sizzling forehand winner on fed’s first serve where the ball looked like going out n then just grazed the line…. Fantastic stuff…. i felt for most part of the match nadal was trying to smash his forehand at fedrer at the net… and every time he did it it kept going long… Fedrer needs no motivation to win a title… he is a class apart… he wants to win the grand slams only now… but alas, in a week’s time he will begin his unsuccessful defense of the title which he won last year by pure unadulterated luck

TomA Says:

Hey fellas, I just did some working out:

If Nadal beats Federer in the French Open final and reaches at least the SF’s of Wimbledon (even if Federer wins it for a sickening 7th time), he will be back to #1 !

True? If so, it seems like a very likely outcome :)

Huh Says:

Fed is classy whether some ‘guy’ fellow is willing to admit it or not. Fed doesn’t make PR stunts unlike some others. Guys like Fed and Murray and Roddick are honest to the core. They’re what they are and they claim themselves to be only such, no more, no less. No artificialness/drama about them. Tough if you’re not going to accept it. And in this year’s context, RG indeed matters the most for Fed coz he’s defending it. Losing a Madrid would be much better for Fed only if he again wins the FO title. Considering the absence of JMDP, I’m rooting for Nole and Murray for FO besides Fed. And I’m a Fed fan. So the anti-Feds needn’t resist themselves from targetting me. ;)

By the way, ‘fed is afraid’ is not as anti-Fded as I used to think she was. She’s nice towards both Fed & Rafa even though her blogname may give a different impression. Good for her and me both,haha. :D

Lorr Says:

Guy – completely agree with you – sour grapes or what!! FYI Federer – the clay season has already been decided – only one person EVER has won the 3 masters 1000 back to back on clay (maybe any surface – have to fact check)and that was RAFA – someone wins the French Open every year.

if there is an award for Best Championship point ever – then this one stands on it’s own – still laughing hee hee.

Dory Says:

Federer could have done better. Lots better. Then if he would have lost, it would have been convincing for me. Hopefully, the coming 2 Slams will revive the hunger inside Roger. He doesn’t care about Masters 1000s. That’s just too bad. He should be as commited as Nadal is.

madmax Says:

Commentators and replay action, last point of the match, “bad bounce on clay”, no way federer was going to get that, but he tried. That’s the main thing.

Things to come away from the match with:

a) rafa’s dominance on clay. A truly awesome effort from a truly awesome man. Great to watch and can’t wait to see some more fed v rafa rivalries. Been too long.

b) Fed reaches his second final this year.

c) Rafa v Fed rivalries resumed once again.

d) Fed was 3 points away from taking the second set at 4:2 up.

e) Fed gracious in defeat and praising Rafa’s clay court game as “supreme”.

f) Fed taking tons of confidence from this match forward to RG, where he has a chance to defend his title.

Am happy.

Janadev Says:

Winning this final could have been close the most number of weeks at No.1 for Federer regardless of FO result..

Cindy_Brady Says:

Federer is in “Sampras” mode. Now only caring about the majors. Using the 1000 master events as a tune up. He is vulnerable in a best of 3 matches but a beast in a best of 5.

Federer will probably reach the FO final and lose to Nadal. He will probably win Wimbledon with Nadal on the other side of the net.

In either event, Nadal recaptures #1 with Federer increasing his grand slam number to 17.

But Kudos to Nadal for doing what most said was impossible. Winning all 3 clay court master’s series events in a row. Skipping Barcelona was a good move. His knees and body responded. Tennis is better now to have Nadal as a threat to win anywhere once again.

Love to see him break though at the U.S Open and claim a career slam before age 25. Younger than Federer and Agassi were.

gabsvamos Says:

Was a great achievement by Nadal to win 3 in a row and to make number 18 in Spain. I love to watch him play because his steely determination always shows, unlike Fed. With regard to rankings possibilities, if Fed gets knocked out of RG before quarters and Rafa wins it, he will be number 1 the day BEFORE Fed has a chance to equal Sampras’ record of weeks at number 1. How sweet would that be for all of us Rafa fans. Bonne chance and VAMOS!!

Tennis Vagabond Says:

A few takeaways. I certainly didn’t see this as the error-fest some others apparently saw. I saw some cracking tennis where both sides were going for outright winners a lot of the time, and consequently made some mistakes.
What it means, from where I sit:
Rafa looks great, and is the prohibitive favourite. BUT the fact that Fed could come this close shows that he CAN beat Nadal on a lucky day. He just has to hope that luck day comes in 3 weeks.
Fed’s return of serve really caught my attention- all week he was getting just about every first serve back in play. That’s an excellent sign.
There is no doubting Nadal is the Beast on Clay, but I think Federer has drawn his line in the dirt that he is #2, and if he can show through the French that he remains a close #2 on clay, it will propel him to remaining #1 on grass and hard.

As a Fed fan, I come away with this feeling just like Fed suggests: with the improvements he made, he has all sorts of momentum. He does not believe it is inevitable he should beat Rafa on clay, so he is not disturbed. Getting close enough for a punchers chance is the best he can do, and he’s there.

Finally, Rafa and Fed are in their rightful spots atop the tennis world and after two years of solid shaking-the-foundation by Murray, del Potro and Davydenko, they remain at their perch.

In commemoration of the re-ignition of this greatest of all rivalries, I invite you all to check my essay on Rafa-Fed as the embodiment of the ultimate aesthetic archetypes according to Nietzche’s formulation:

In commemora

Tennis10 Says:

I think there are too many anti-Fed comments!

Fed was right, the way he was playing last week would make anyone think that he was about to go out early in Madrid. But he got his confidence back and some good wins under his belt so I don’t see why he shouldn’t do well at FO.
Remember as well that just before the AO, he lost in straight sets to Davy in Dubai and everyone said that he wasn’t playing well enough and yet he managed one of his best performances in a grand slam for years.

Congrats to Rafa, by the way, it’s an amazing achievement!
But I hope Fed wins the FO!

Kimo Says:

Kudos to my fellow Fedfans madmax, Vagabond and Tennis10. I agree with everything you said. Fed played a very good match, he just fell short on a few occasions but there’s no shame in losing to the King of Clay who is Spanish on a clay court in Spain.

Polo Says:

Does Roger Federer have a coach now? My wife insists the young guy sitting next to Mirka at the Madrid final is Roger’s coach. I haven’t heard of Roger hiring a coach since so long ago. I know many of the bloggers here can easily provide me with a reliable answer.

Kimo Says:

Polo, Roger has Luthi as his coach, sort of. He books courts, arranges practice sessions with hitting partners, and gives Roger some insight about opponents Roger might now know. He’s not like Stefanki to Roddick, it’s not like that.

Polo Says:

Thanks for the info. Luthi then seems more like an activity coordinator than a regular coach. Thanks!

dangerouspaul Says:

leading 4-2 in the breaker and produce 4 UE in a row???? you will never ever see nadal do that..incredible like i said before..its a few points here and there ..the stats were so close like never my opinion either one could have won ..and fed really pushed nadal so thats a good thing..he knows he can win..he just needs to be more lucky sometimes..its incredible that he didnt finish him off in the breaker…all nadal points were unforced errors by fed..thats really he has to be better next time than he has a shot

nadline Says:

Roger has helped himself to a very large bowl of sour grapes again –

By Telegraph staff and agencies
Published: 9:17AM BST 17 May 2010
Roger Federer – Roger Federer shrugs off defeat to Rafael Nadal at Madrid Open
Unconcerned: Roger Federer says that his clay court season will be defined by how he performs at the French Open, which begins next Sunday Photo: AP

“Rafa’s and my clay-court seasons are decided at the French Open, and not before,” Federer said. “It’s unfortunately – or fortunately – like that. If we win all the tournaments like Rafa now and then go out in the first round of the French, everything will be questioned.”

Nadal, who became the first player to win a hat-trick of claycourt Masters Series titles in one year, was not prepared to endorse Federer’s views.

“Well, that’s a respectable opinion that I don’t share,” the Spaniard said after defeating the Swiss 6-4 7-6. “And not because I have won the three [Masters] leading up to it, which some might think, but because I think it is unfair to think the whole clay season is decided by one tournament.”

Federer displayed his customary sangfroid after losing Sunday’s final, saying he was pleased with his overall form ahead of the French Open, which begins next Sunday.

“I think under the circumstances I played well but he comes up with some incredible stuff,” Federer said “He’s Rafa Nadal after all and he’s playing with huge confidence and an incredible game from the baseline and it’s never easy to penetrate through that.”

Federer beat Nadal in last year’s final in the Spanish capital before claiming an emotional first French Open title and a sixth Wimbledon crown and then snatching back the top ranking.

Injured knees wrecked Nadal’s year and he failed in his bid for a fifth straight French Open crown when he was upset in the fourth round by Swede Robin Soderling.

After winning the Australian Open in January, Federer has endured a dry spell while Nadal, by contrast, has won the Masters in Monte Carlo, Rome and Madrid, his success on Sunday a record 18th Masters title, surpassing Andre Agassi.

Ezorra Says:

To Kimo and Kimmi who keep asking why Nadal prefers not to see himself as favourite for any titles (oh btw, this time he said he’s not the favourite to win FO). Maybe this one can help you two…

“This is what you have to write in your articles and you are free to say whatever you believe. I won’t say it because I don’t like this tag and I don’t think I am either. I am very happy with what has happened up to now, I’ve got back to my best level and that’s the important thing. I was the favourite before (at the French Open) and I’ve lost, and then other times I’ve won. Who knows what will happen in a week and a half or two weeks, there is more than one contender, there are many contenders.”
-Rafael Nadal


InMyOpinion Says:

Roger needs help or he will soon lose his dignity. What a disgusting comment to make that if you won the 3 clay Masters and go out in the 1st round at the FO they don’t count, bla, bla, bla. He is obviously wishing that Rafa will go out in the 1st round at RG, how disgusting!!!!!!!!

He stopped himself from sselfishly crying yesterday, but forgot to engage his brain before openig his mouth today.

Kimo Says:

nadline, Roger is actually right on the money. To top players, the majors are what determine if the season is a success or a failure. Believe me, Rafa would not be pleased by his three masters titles if he loses in RG (where he is, whether he likes to or not, the heavy favorite).

I remember reading Agassi’s autobiography how after he compiled a 28-1 record in the 1997 US summer hardcourt season after losing the final of the US Open to Sampras (after winning in DC, Canada and Cincinnati) that he would have gladly traded any of those 28 wins for winning the US Open. To you it might sound ridiculous, but this is how top players think.

Peter D Says:

nadline, InMyOpinion
Sour grapes or not, he is definitely telling the truth. Don’t you think that if Rafa goes out in the first – or, hell, even loses in the FO final, it will be a great disappointment for him overall in spite of the three Master titles? Don’t you think he himself would trade any of the three MS titles, or even all three for the FO victory? Get real, Federer is just saying what he believes is true. Same as he did about the weight of expectations on Murray going into the AO final. You might think it is mind games or sour grapes or whatever, but I come to believe it is just saying what’s on his mind. And he’s right. If Rafa loses in the FO, this will NOT be remembered as is best clay season: not because all is decided by just one tournament, but because this tournament is the most important one.

Tennis10 Says:

InMyOpinion… if there’s anyone who’s got the right to only focus on GS its Roger Federer!

Orville Says:

Nadal did not win this match Roger lost it. I thought Roger was trying his best he just made a couple of silly errors. I was shocked that Roger lost the match on four unforced errors. I think Nadal is the only man that gets in to his head. I think Roger is frightened by Nadal’s macho masculinity. Most of the men are afraid of Roger but not Nadal.

Ezorra Says:

I think Federer is entitled to his opinion. Me too and I disagree with him.

Having said that, based on his previous interviews, I believe Federer has nothing but respects towards Nadal and that is the thing that matter most in their relationship as a friend off the court and rival on the court…

Vamos Rafa! Aleez Federer! (I hope I spell it right!)

blank Says:

Ezorra: That quote from Rafa shows how classy he is. At times…well most of the time, the tendency is to read too much into a player’s quote. And it’s good to see that Uncle Toni’s sometimes abrasive attitude hasn’t rubbed onto him.

As much as I’d love for the Fed of 2006/07 to be back, I know that’s not going to happen. I’d be glad if he can take his GS count to 20 before the end of his career. Time will tell.

Apart from the Rafa dominance, this season has been a bit of a letdown. Delpo, Davy, Roddick, Soda and Djoko out with injury. Murray and Fed having some (mental?) issues. Rest of the field was never a threat to win anything big. Not that any of this would have mattered as far as the end result is concerned. Even if everyone was available , fully fit and in form, Rafa was pretty much unbeatable. All that it would have done is take a bit more out of Rafa’s tank and made things much more competitive.

At this rate, I just can’t see anyone, other than an injury, beating Rafa at the FO. An exception would be Roger if he plays out of the world tennis. But unless I see it happen once, it’ll just be a wish.

blank Says:

I am beginning to get a bit worried about the Fed. He thinks it’s just a switch that he can flip on and off at the Grand Slams alone. Whether he really believes it or not I am not sure. But I know one thing, if you repeat something to yourself and others a million times, it’s just a matter of time before you actually start believing in it, whether it’s right or wrong. I think Fed is at that point now. He was so close to losing at last year’s FO several times and once at Wimbledon. Things certainly are not going to be easy this year. Fed’s attitude has definitely changed since AO and I don’t like that. On the back of Nadal’s form and Fed’s recent attitude, he is in danger of serioulsly slipping down in the rankings. If he goes to #3 or below, then he’d pretty soon start running into Nadal way before the finals at any event. Given how he performs against Rafa, I don’t think that bodes well for him. I am afraid that an early loss (before SF) at a GS is not that far away.

pro rafa Says:

Let us cut the crap here… we all know that Fedex has a lot left in his tank going into FO… He probably will lose in max 4 sets to nadal… As to whether Fedrer has come close to solving the Rafa puzzle needs to be seen… Fedrer just does NOT earn or get a right to concentrate only on GS… He can set Nadal’s masters record in his sight despite his age… he’s got the class to beat anyone anywhere(except nad in clay which he has done occasionally with nad playing some pretty poor tennis)…. If u r banking on Fed concentrating on slams, the same goes with Rafa too… He brings his true A game in the quarters raising his game to level which even rog will find very difficult to match… The last thing that Fed needs now is nad coming all out at FO… that’ll truly crush him

sheila Says:

it seems to me, that federer fans never knock nadal, but nadal fans always knock federer. they are both great players and they are very different individuals in how they view the tennis world. federer is almost 5 yrs older & probably does feel the slam events are all that matter. nadal is still young & hungry & masters and slams are important to him. what matters is, we as fans, get to enjoy both of them. everytime federer loses he’s criticized, but when nadal loses its only because hes tired or injured. anything federer says, a lot (not all) of the nadal fans will say hes arrogant, stupid, making excuses, blah, blah, blah. so basically its a no win situation for federer. the bottom line nadal is unbeatable on clay. bottom line also, federer has made it very clear, that at this time in his tennis career, the slams are whats most important to him. history does speak for itself, because most tennis players are remembered for the slams they’ve won, not the masters events. federer and nadal will both be remembered because they have conquered both.

madmax Says:

Ezorra Says:
I think Federer is entitled to his opinion. Me too and I disagree with him.

Having said that, based on his previous interviews, I believe Federer has nothing but respects towards Nadal and that is the thing that matter most in their relationship as a friend off the court and rival on the court…

Vamos Rafa! Aleez Federer! (I hope I spell it right!)

May 17th, 2010 at 11:23 am


the interview quoted above. Word for word was NOT what federer said. Totally misconstrued, if you read the full one, you are correct in saying that Roger has the utmost respect for rafa. always has. always will.

There are no sour grapes on his part at all. Like you said, he speaks the truth and the truth is rafa is a better player on clay. he accepts that. that doesnt mean that he couldnt beat him at the FO, and if anyone can do it, then federer can. Furthermore, when you see these two at the end of the match, shaking hands, belly pat, smiles. i love this part of it. Pure respect. they are great for each other.

blank? why so worried? I think that as a fan, it might be good to believe what roger says? He says he is motivated. We expect so much from him as his faithful fans, that sometimes I think the day after a match, where there were opportunities for him to take it to a third set, should perhaps be analysed more objectively? He played well blank. It wasn’t the three setter we would have wished for, but he wasn’t far off.

I think Fed can take a lot of positives from his performance yesterday. He went in as the underdog and NOT the favourite, and he lost to Rafa, the favourite. So what’s not to like?

He’ll finish year end No.1, after that. It’s a different year, with different objectives, but am certain he still wants to win tournaments and still be at the very top of his game.

Look at Roddick, forever the fighter. Always there, reliable, working hard, still around. Been in top ten now for almost 10 years? He could have given up a few years ago now. But he still a strong opponent. Him and fed are a similar age, played through juniors together, so may be more credence should be given to Fed. He still has tons to give us as fans.

Twocents Says:

“Guys like Fed and Murray and Roddick are honest to the core.”

Good one here, Huh. Keep going! Add Djok, Gulbis, La Monf,…

We got more than enough share of professionally tailored-marketing talks from our politicians, lawyers, and bizmen. No more from our sportsmen, please.

jane Says:

“Since 2005, Nadal’s win/loss record on clay is 168/6.”

I read this on Robbie Koenig’s blog. That’s INSANE! As I said before, there is no shame in losing to Rafa on clay – at that rate, who hasn’t?

Huh Says:

What a nice post by Ezorra at 11.23 a.m.! Kudos to him for being this level-headed! Thanks Ezorra… for your objective take on yesterday’s situation and Fed’s comments. Good luck to your Nadal. :)

By the way, I’d love to answer guys like guy, nadline etc. on their hypocrisy and dislike towards Fed, not to mention their envy! But for the sake of guys like Ezorra, I would desist from it. Enough of their ‘Fed’s sour grapes’ blabbering already, YAWN…….

I like tennis bullies Says:

nadal’s crap game was good enough to beat federer’s best.
lowls tennisx will be in mourning for a week!

Huh Says:

Thanks Mr.Twocents. So nice to talk with you again! :)

skeezerweezer Says:

Glad to see some sanity return to the posting with Rafa and Fed fans giving props, IMO’s to BOTH players, win or lose.

Cindy_Brady Says:

All of this FO sh*t is stupid speculation. A healthy Nadal is going to kick everyone’s ass on the red stuff. Sure he may have a couple tough matches that may see him fall behind in a set or two, but he will find a way to grind them out and win.

Roger Federer will have the far tougher road for sure. Haas should have taken him out last year, let’s not forget that.

I hope Federer defines his clay court season “Well” after losing to Nadal, yet again in the FO final (if he’s fortunate enough to get there).

The Federer of 2010 is far more error prone than the Federer of 2005 – 2006 where he still couldn’t beat Nadal. How is the 2010 Federer going to Beat Nadal when he’s this error prone?

Fed’s only hope to repeat at Roland Garros is if Nadal falls before the final, not likely.

After Soderling surprised an un-healthy Nadal last year, I don’t think he will take any one lightly. He will play with more focus and intensity than ever before.

Watch out FO field, Nadal is going to mow you down one by one.

Huh Says:

Can’t disagree however with the 11.50 a.m. post of pro-rafa.

skeezerweezer Says:


Ezorra’s post at 11.23 a.m…same here…..”ditto”:)

Zman Says:

Let’s talk strategy. Perhaps you experts can help with this one. Roger’s got one of the best slice backhands in the game – a shot he uses effectively against everyone else. Why was he content on hitting topspin backhands to Rafa’s forehand. I would think a short slice backhand down the line to Rafa’s backhand would open the court up and force Rafa to hit cross court to Roger’s forehand. I know – easier said than done – but I would think after losing to Rafa so many times, he would try this tactic. Thoughts?

Federer: Clay Season ‘Decided at the French Open’, Not Madrid Says:

[…] Recent News… Nadal Beats Federer for Madrid Title […]

Huh Says:

The moron ‘I like tennis bullies’ is back. This person just remains busy kissing the butt of every player except Fed. Surprising that he doesn’t get bored or anything, haha. ;)

skeezerweezer Says:


First, in respect to Rafa fans, he(Fed) got beat, and Rafa has a better game than him past and present on Clay. That is a given and he/they deserve it and earned it.

It is obvious Fed has more variety of shots than anyone in the game. The problem is in his head, and Rafa’s in it. IMO until he does not “fear” Rafa and get the “Uh-oh…here we go again” attitude out of his head when he plays Rafa, his mind cannot open up and get to the business at and which is to use a strategy, a way, with his game to beat Rafa, which IMO he has. I saw highlights of the match and saw things differently than some others. More like Skorocel did on the previous article. Simple as that, ha!

Huh Says:

No matter how cautiously one plays, he cannot win if he’s not destined to, not even Nadal on clay! That said, I would like to see the A-Rafa at FO. Good luck to Rafa, I don’t hate Rafa at all despite being an out and out Fed fan, I actually needn’t. I respect Rafa VERY much as a tennis player coz he’s incredibly talented, has great shots, mental toughness and dtermination which makes him a great champion, there’s a reason why he has maintained his ground against Fed. But this is international tennis and none can be taken lightly. But again, I bet my money on Nadal for FO. However, it hardly means that I’m going to declare anyone FO 10 champion in advance, let’s wait and see what happens. Why rush? My allegiance with Fed, Muzza and Nole for FO.


Tennis Vagabond Says:

With all this universal consensus that Rafa will sleepwalk to the FO title, I have come to believe he will lose. When everyone believes the same thing it can’t be true.

On a more pedantic note, there is NEVER a sure bet at a Grand Slam. 168 and 6 is an AWESOME record- but its 6 losses from being perfect. None of those losses were foreseen, the next one won’t be either.

blank Says:


Fed’s attitude was bothering me a bit. He just seems to assure himself that everything is ok, when it’s not ok and there is room for acknowledging it and improving. I am just looking for Fed to say something like that and take the positives.

The comment clay season being decided at the FO (Sean posted a new article) to me, is very troublesome.

blank Says:

Correction: comment “on” clay season

jane Says:

Tennis Vagabond, of course we can’t predict who will win the FO, and like Rafa himself said, he lost there last year so he can lose again; he also pointed out there are many contenders not just one (or two). BTW, I read and enjoyed your Apollo/Dionysus Fed/Rafa analogy. Just a quick spelling question – wouldn’t it be Apollonian versus Apollinian?

Tennis Vagabond Says:

Jane- thanks. I think N. spells it Apollinian. of course, it could be just his translator, I don’t know if the German would be the same.

Twocents Says:

There would be no fun at all if Fed always claimed that he got an issue on clay every time before and after he lost to Nadal, right? It’s much more fun that Fed did what he’d been doing since 2006: losing to Nadal and claimed he figured him out, and losing to him again, again, and again… LOL!

Win or lose, Fed got to stick to his destiny, and he did, does, and will. And we Fed fans love him for it.

Have a good day, Huh, my brother.

Jane, I think it’s going to be a wide open FO.

jane Says:

Twocents, I hope you’re right about the FO; with a lot of ailing and slumping players it’s tough to see other than the usual suspects in the finals ; ) But we’ll soon find out. Hope you’re “around” here for it. Always enjoy your twocents.

blank Says:

Twocents, You are truly one that lives by your name. You come around once in a while, give your two cents and go. You are cool!

Twocents Says:

Thanks, Jane, for tolerating an eratic and non-committing poster :-)). You guys keep this fun-boat afloat and sail.

The best thing of our 2010 season so far has been that most top guns are pacing themselves nicely towards the big prizes, while in the past we only saw Fed do that. And nothing I’ve seen so far discourages my feeling that Djok, Murray, Davy, Roddick etc shall make a big statement at the remaining slams.

Twocents Says:


Your compliment sounds better than a Fed win over Nadal to this Fed fan. Thanks.

Instead of worrying about Fed — the young multi-millionare who has almost everything, I hope you worry about the health of our Fed fans. Every Fed win nowadays is either icing or cream or some sugary stuff I don’t know how to name — really bad for our health…And thank god, Fed had been helping out after AO. How considerate of him :-)).

nadline Says:

Why should Federer even suggest that Nadal might lose in the first round at RG, it’s in such bad taste.

Peter D Says:

nadline, he said “we”, so, he suggested that they both could lose.

tennisfansince76 Says:

“Zman Says:
Let’s talk strategy. Perhaps you experts can help with this one. Roger’s got one of the best slice backhands in the game – a shot he uses effectively against everyone else. Why was he content on hitting topspin backhands to Rafa’s forehand. I would think a short slice backhand down the line to Rafa’s backhand would open the court up and force Rafa to hit cross court to Roger’s forehand. I know – easier said than done – but I would think after losing to Rafa so many times, he would try this tactic. Thoughts?”

I have had the exact same thought. rog loves to hit his forehand to nadal’s BH and his BH to nadal’s FH. Nadal’s heavy topspin FH eats Roger’s slices for lunch. but I have seen it be effective against Rafa’s BH in getting weak shots. he simply needs to be more patient. use the BH down the line to get short shots then sit inside the baseline and pummel FHs inside out to the Rafa FH. that is the blueprint others have used against rafa.and sometimes use heavy high bouncers from the FH to the Rafa BH. Murray does that very well. and don’t be afraid to reset the point. use serve and volley selectively to keep rafa off balance. again Murray did that super well at the AO. I’m not sure how effective any of this would be on clay where Nadal can cover his FH side much better but on faster surfaces he is a fool not to do it. i remember at wimby 08 at some point well into the match Fed finally started to hit a lot of inside out FH’s the winners started gushing off his racket. Fed is stubborn sometimes though. he just seems to like to hit his inside the baseline FH’s to the Nadal BH leaving the whole deuce court open.

tennisfansince76 Says:

if I was Fed’s coach ( Luthi? ) I would get in his grill and tell him the one thing he must do against Rafa is get in his face. every BH especially on second serve he should hit extremely aggressive shots. make some miss some i dont care just hit the *%@#$$ing ball. take the point out of Rafa’s hands. Rafa does not like it when player’s do that. granted he still wins a lot of matches against players that do play like that because of the sublime percentage tennis he plays but still he does not like it. even playing the lottery like this he would still win a higher percentage of break points than he has in a lot of his big matches against Nadal.

Cindy_Brady Says:

LOL at the websperts here telling Federer how he should play Nadal.

Nadal beats Federer because his strokes and game were built to win on clay.

Nadal’s clay court game >>> Fed’s smooth talented game.

tennisfansince76 Says:

as for Fed’s comment. some people are getting ruffled feathers but it is simply a fact. If Rafa loses out early in the FO most people and press will talk about “what happened?”, what is wrong w/ Rafa?, are his knees shot? rather than what a great clay court season he had. It would be the same if Fed won
in Canada and Cincinatti and then flamed out in the 3rd round of the US open no one would talk about what a great NA hard court season he had? the talk would be about what went wrong. of course players like to do well at the Master’s tourney’s but it is the grand slams that determine their legacies. and the players know this. the grand slams are where the player’s nerves are really tested. you think Nadal was ever more nervous than the 4th set tiebreak at Wimby 08 when he had
chances to win? His knees turned to Jello. do you think he was ever like that at a Master’s series tournament. maybe as a callow youth if ever. Grand slams simply count more than master’s series and not just more points. their prestige is several orders of magnitudes larger. look at the names carved on the Wimby wall. Borg, laver, Connors, Mcenroe, Becker, Sampras, Federer. all legends because they won there. and more importantly almost nobody who doesn’t belong there. maybe Stich. The grand slams w/ a very few exceptions weed out the pretenders and the merely good players.

tennisfansince76 Says:

“Cindy_Brady Says:
LOL at the websperts here telling Federer how he should play Nadal.

Nadal beats Federer because his strokes and game were built to win on clay.

Nadal’s clay court game >>> Fed’s smooth talented game.”

There is no doubt that Nadal is better than Fed on Clay. their H2H record and our eyes tell us this but on faster surfaces Fed often seems not to alter his tactics against Rafa.

aleish17 Says:

Fed may have said what he said about the clay season to be decided in the FO maybe bcoz that’s what he want to believe. Considering Fed’s achievements, capabilities, and talent, it’s not unlikely for him to grab another slam. Maybe it sound sourgraping for other people but we just have to understand that sometimes even the greatest player falters and stumbles and it’s not always easy to handle defeats.

I am a big Rafa fan but i have pure respect for federer. But i like Rafa’s attitude and determination to win every single tournament he enters, regardless of it being a slam or a master.
The past 11 months had been very painful for Rafa and for Rafa fan’s (including myself). But now, he is back in his winning mode and it feels great to see him win again.

skeezerweezer Says:


Well said and with an fair bit of common sense :)

I am a Fed fan but I know what you went through with Rafa, so kudos to you still respecting Fed and kudos to you and your fav is back! :)

skeezerweezer Says:


Good Knowledge on your posts, you know the game, tactics and strokes. Somebody posting out of the blue trying to say your a web expert on telling Fed what to do obviously does not know what your trying to share, an opinion on what you know. Obviously, the poster doesn’t know a lot. They can laugh at that…

Daniel Says:

Somebody mention Fed slicing to Nadal’s backhand. If I recall right, Fed was winning a lot of points when pushing Nadal’s backhand, not with slices (he should use more of those).
But after Nadal won first set he made several crosscourt winners from his backhand wing. Everytime Federer tryed to push him off the court in his backhand side he returned a really powerfull stroke. He started feeling confortable in the match and what Fed did, dropshots. Yesterday they played like in chess.
But in the end a few errors by Fed in tense moments (4-5 15-40) in firs set and 4-2 (forehand dropshot inside the court in the net) and mental errors after that.

I can imagine his mind thinking: oh my god I just lost the match with his stupid mistake. Didn’t forget the point and made 2 UE in a row, something he wasn’t doing the whole match.

He even mentioned this kind of thoughts when he used the same drop shot in his first match point against Murray in AO 10 tiebreak. But Murray is no Nadal and hitted the net on Fed’s next match point.

Kimmi Says:

Ezorra; thanks for that quote from rafa regarding him been the favorite.

I understand where he is coming from. To call himself a fav for the whole tournament (madrid, RG etc) its maybe difficult for him because he has to play a lot of players before winning the tourny…and one can never know what will happen on the way. (though we all know who is the king on clay)

My issue is with him calling his opponents the favorite like in madrid when he said federer was the favorite or other occasions where he called djoko the favorite and many other. I am afraid, i don’t get it. If rafa feels he cannot be the favorite in a match because his opponent also has the same chance then he should so..say something of this nature maybe..

“I don’t think i am the favorite because my opponent can win this match too as we both have the same chance”

But instead what we are getting is “I think federer is a favorite” “djoko is a favorite” etc..on clay, really..its just comes out funny.

tennisfansince76 Says:

“Kimmi Says:
Ezorra; thanks for that quote from rafa regarding him been the favorite.

But instead what we are getting is “I think federer is a favorite” “djoko is a favorite” etc..on clay, really..its just comes out funny.”

I think it is just mind games. a pressure valve to release some pressure and put it on the other guy. I think he knows who the favorite is. he certainly
carries himself on the court. like he knows.

Kimmi Says:

exactly tennisfan, mind games is what i am thinking too.

tennisfansince76 Says:

s”keezerweezer Says:

Good Knowledge on your posts…Somebody posting out of the blue trying to say your a web expert on telling Fed what to do obviously does not know what your trying to share, an opinion on what you know”

thx. its all in good fun. we’re all here because we are tennis fans and love the game. we all have our favorites. I obviously favor Fed but I have great grudging respect for the tennis game and lion’s heart of nadal. if it wasn’t for him Fed would probably be a 22 time grand slam champion w/
multiple calendar year slams! this site is for us to have fun slinging our opinions and analysis around. no need to make it too personal. anyway most of the exchanges around here are pretty mild. if you want some serious vitriol then check out some political websites. i enjoy reading the posts
on this site by the site authors all the posters. tennis has been my favorite sport on and off since
1976. the first match I watched on TV was Borg/Connors US open ’76. I, of course, was a connors man(or boy) and was quite relieved after the tense 4th set tiebreak. little did I anticipate the travails to come ( wimby 77,78,81, us open 77, the total domination at the hands of Borg and the usurpation of Mcenroe). but in 82 and 83 there was some redemption.

SG Says:

I believe someone said that Fed’s not Fed of 2005 or 2006. Then again, I don’t think Rafa is the Rafa of 2007 & 2008.

I think this FO will have some surprises in store for tennis fans. I do think Rafa will likely run the table and win it but is by no means a certainty.

There are a lot of questions:

1) Does Rafa have 3 set knees or 5 set knees?

2) Is Fed content with his one FO or is he determined to beat Rafa in his personal playground and add an untoppable feather to his cap?

3) Hell, is Federer just looking to hang around, break Sampras’ open era record of 7 W’s and then cut out?

Who knows? With many of the contenders withering (Djok, Murray) and the player capable of burying then both (Del Po) on the injury list, this may be an FO where relative mediocrity is good enough to get the job done. Fed and Rafa, all things being equal, are not mediocre champions. But they are champions that are playing mediocre tennis by their standards. And this leaves them vulnerable. The question is, is there anyone out there with the courage to call them out?

thetennisguy Says:

Would Federer have said this, if he had won the tournament? Of course, not. Stop Whining and start winning!

skeezerweezer Says:


I like how you use the least amount of words to get your point across :). We didn’t need an essay to read :)

Huh Says:

Very nice post by aleish 17 at 4.25 p.m. Makes real sense. I wish more and more of such kind and nice Rafa-fans to come here so that a brake could be applied on the fanatic anti-Feds and their sickening arrogance, mud-slinging towards and disrespect for Fed.

aleish 17:

You are very nice and hence wishing your guy Rafa good luck.


Purcell Says:

Strangely, the reactions to Sean’s somewhat inflammatorily titled article are more measured/balanced than those for this one so thanks to all contributors. I suppose that’s why I feel the need to put in my twoeuros here.

My theory is that just like we have acknowledged the existence of the syndrome ‘charity fatigue’, some of us are now coping with Roger fatigue. In any field those who raise the bench mark and are around for so long will eventually come to a point where people wish to nit-pick and insult. Jealousy and frustration lead to the tables (or benches) being turned on them. Human nature I’m afraid.

Who said Roger is…. ‘afraid of Nadal’s macho masculinity’…..? Ha ha. He and the more perceptive have seen right through this marketing ploy which sits so uncomfortably with…..well you know…..I’m so humble, Roger is the greatest, I’m not the favourite blah. If Roger’s afraid, why has he not retired, why does he keep coming back for more, why has he not backed out of matches with Nadal? Come to think of it he’s never backed out of a single match and has not indulged in medical time-outs unlike his whinging counterpart. I saw him have a time out against Andy Murray and when asked why he didn’t retire he replied, “I guess you’d have to drill me in the eye before I do that.” Macho masculinity eh?

As for Nadline, I apologise for getting carried away on a tiny little Nadal rant. Just trying to make my point. However I suggest you learn from the rationale of Sheila, Huh and other like-minded posters, Please take your outpourings of vitriol back to your coterie of Nadal worshippers on Tennistalk. Your level of disrespect for anyone who beats the object of your disturbing crush is astounding.

For your unkind comments re Soderling (TT) your punishment is as follows. Go to Ikea (preferably in Sweden), and spend exactly£80, queue for three hours, eat a hot dog without mustard (you don’t need that) and spend a further 24 hours assembling flat packs of your most disliked players. Proceed to insult them at will. Get it all out of your system so it gives you and us a break.

kit Says:


made me laugh with your post, sometimes it’s really disturbing how much hatred or disliked these so called ” tennis fans ” have on other players.

btw, i still believe federer can win the FO.

Purcell Says:

Thank you so much Kit. I just felt I had to redress the balance somewhat.
I too hope Roger will win (and not because he has anything to prove).
Failing that I would also be happy to see any of these fine upstanding and honest young fellows succeed. Either of the Andys, Robin, Daveed, Stan or Kolya. Grasping at straws perhaps but you never know.

aleish17 Says:

thanks to skeezerweezer and huh!

I also wish other Rafa fans would be more than happy to commend Rafa for all his efforts, rather than criticizing other players especially Federer, who has accomplished a lot in the game of tennis.

Federer’s tennis record is great, by far the greatest. But that does not stop me from wishing that Nadal would also be that great, if not greater than Fed. He’s got a long way to go coz he’s young and hungry for more titles. Just a wishful thinking from a loyal Rafa fan.

madmax Says:

blank Says:

Fed’s attitude was bothering me a bit. He just seems to assure himself that everything is ok, when it’s not ok and there is room for acknowledging it and improving.

hi blank. sorry did not reply. been busy last couple of days and you know what it is like when you need a bit of a break :)

Just to say, dont worry so. I need to find it, (as have a whole bank of them), about Roger’s thoughts and feelings, reported when he was travelling in a car – I think in France late part of last year – so I hope you find some comfort from that?

Purcell – that was an hilarious post – had me chuckling dude.

I’ll be back blank, in a short while. :)

madmax Says:


the first one is a link with a short piece for your to read.

The second one is part of an interview which was early part of this year and refers specifically to what he wants to achieve this year in terms of masters, FO and ending year World No. 1.

Apologies to all fans who have read this already. scroll through. :)
French Open

Quote from the ESPN Magazine’s recent cover feature on Roger Federer, from an interview done at Indian Wells this year:

“I think it’s a pity he (Rafael Nadal) gave up his pirate pants and the sleeveless. I thought our styles were colliding even more then. I kind of miss it.“

And some more words of wisdom from Roger – this time on his perceived arrogance:

“(W)hen I got to No. 1, I realized being only humble and always pretending everybody else is the favorite sounds odd, you know? When I am No. 1 in the world and I say, ‘It’s a miracle’ if I win, who is going to accept that?”

Tuesday January 5th, 21h30, Roger Federer is chatting on the backseat of the car

I’ve never woken up one morning asking myself: ‘What do I do now?’ We’re lucky because tennis is a very dense sport. There’s the rankings, Grand Slams, Masters 1000, head-to-heads… Sometimes I motivate myself just by thinking about the history I have with one player.
[whynotme – Murray at the end of last year? LOL]

Q: You haven’t felt the need to think about what happens next, about your goals?

RF: No. The desire to play comes naturally. What I often do is that I go back to the beginning: why did I chose tennis as a kid? Why did I work so hard during all those years? What do I like so much when I play tennis? And the answers come easily. It’s simple: I don’t really think there is someone who loves tennis more than I do.

Q: But don’t you feel like a burden has disappeared?

RF: Yes and no. Personally I think the pressure is always there, and it’s a good thing. It’s a different pressure, but it has not disappeared.

Anyway, if one day there’s nobody to put pressure on me anymore, I’ll still be there to put it on myself. I don’t even remember having played a match without feeling any pressure.

Q: You like challenges [whynotme – they do not mean Hawk-Eye ], so here are some. Tell us if you’re motivated by them.

RF: OK, here we go.

Q: You need 2 more Masters 1000 to beat Agassi’s record of 17.

RF: Mmmmmh. I’m not really excited by that.

Masters 1000 have been existing only for 20 years, and I don’t know how many of them great players from the past could have won. So this record does not mean much.

Q: Another challenge. If you stay world No. 1 after RG, you’ll beat Sampras’ all-time record of 286 weeks.

RF: This is an important record to me.
When I beat Connors’ record (consecutive weeks as world No. 1) I already thought it was really great. Staying in the front that long when you know who is behind you, it’s not easy. By the way, my main goal this year is to finish the year No. 1 in the world. It has been so hard to get that ranking back.

Q: So you want to stay No. 1. What else?

RF: To win more tournaments. Last year, I won 4 of them. They were big ones, but I have to be able to do better. I lacked titles in smaller tournaments. True, I had to withdraw several times, because of an injury or because I needed some rest (Dubai, Halle, Tokyo). So I focused entirely on big tournaments, and I don’t really like it. Before I withdraw from Tokyo last year, I had told Seve (Luthi): ‘I’m going there to serve-and-volley on 1st and 2nd serves’. Because I thought it could help me later.

Q: You’re in the top 10 since you’ve entered it in October, 2002. Do you think today’s top 10 is stronger than back in 2002, with Safin, Hewitt, Novak, Henman, Grosjean, Ferrero?

RF: Tough question. I’m not so sure. Nowadays, the guys have less weaknesses but maybe also less main strengths. Before, players were more surprising, with more varied games. It was harder to dominate on a specific surface.

Nowadays playing conditions are been standardized and the players as well. Often, when I watch players like Davydenko, Del Potro or Djokovic, I wonder what their best shot is…

Q: If you had to chose one player that is going to reach a new milestone in 2010, who would it be?

RF: If I had to chose only one, it would be Murray. He has built himself cleverly, he won a lot of Masters 1000, he already has a lot of experience. That being said, Del Potro never won a Masters 1000 but still won the US Open. A year ago, I would never have said predicted that. He was not really using the strength of his serve, unlike now. He’s improved so much.
Q: Monfils, Tsonga, Simon, Gasquet, you’re interested?

RF: A lot. We all know they have a big potential. Let’s say they confirmed it last year. Now, they need to make a breakthrough and therefore to be less injured. Richard is going to go up quite fast. The big question is how far?

Q: You never had any serious injuries. The Australian Open is your 41th GS tournament in a row. Is it hard work or luck?

RF: Both. I’m expecting myself to be fit in big tournaments. You cannot just come at Grand Slams with a small injury. Ladies can handle the 3 first rounds while healing, men just can’t.

My style of play helps me to last longer. Most of the time, I decide how the point is played, I make the other one run.

When Rafa takes 45 minutes to win a set, I can take 30. I worked really hard when I was a junior to build myself an efficient armor. Now, I work less hard, but more precisely.

Q: You’re 28 and you can’t recover as fast as before. Is it why you hired Stephane Vivier, a French physio?

RF: He’s from Marseille on top of that! (he laughs) It’s true that your age matters. Until this season, I always had masseurs, and I wanted to work with a physio. He had worked a long time with the ATP and I didn’t want people to think that I was stealing him, like ‘Sorry guys, but I’m Federer. Now he’s mine’. I think everybody took it well.

Q: What do you mean by ‘working more precisely’?
RF: When you’re young, you don’t warm up. You play on your PlayStation and when you’re called to play the match, you leave.

Now, I consistently take a 10-minutes muscle warm-up right before the match. I strengthen my back nearly everyday because I’ve had problems in the past. I’ve always felt my back wasn’t strong enough.
Q: And what about your sleep? Word is that you sleep like a log.

RF: True! If I don’t sleep 11 or 12 hours a day, it’s not right. If I don’t have that amount of sleep, I hurt myself. When the twins cry and I’m in a tournament, I put my earplugs in and I go back to sleep.

Q: Some said it was self-centered and unpatriotic. People thought that after having beaten Sampras’ record you would be able to play the Davis Cup…

RF: People have to understand that it’s just not possible to do everything. Had I made another choice, maybe I wouldn’t have won RG last year. Do people prefer me to play the Davis Cup or to hold the GS record?

Don’t Swiss people prefer having me as the world No. 1? If I play it and then it costs me in the rankings, people will always be there to tell me: ‘Ho, hum, you’re not no1 anymore!’
Q: Is it really impossible to do both?
RF: I consider that a Davis Cup round amounts to take out one Masters 1000. And I’m not ready to do that. I still favour my individual choices; time will come when this changes. You also have to understand that I do not have a team as abundant as Rafa’s with Spain. I’m not complaining. It’s just a fact. Rafa hasn’t played the quarterfinals and the semifinals last year. But people saw him as the star in the finals. They just forgot he wasn’t there before.


every now and again I remind myself of some of the positive things that Federer said in this interview and remind myself that his motivation to stay in tennis is well and truly there. So I don’t doubt his intentions.


madmax Says:

Everyone, I lost the link so posted part of the interview *hence the long post*.

Twocents Says:

Good one, Purcell@5:05am. Keep it up!

Ikea even has organic pasta, in addition to free refill coffee. Not a bad place to hang out :-)). If you’re in a foreign town and in no adventure mood, go to Ikea to relax. But they do offer worse coffee in Texas Ikea, comapred to Europe and Asia. How arrogant!

Purcell Says:

Thank you Twocents and Madmax. Actually the coffee in UK is awful but despite that I’m an Ikea fan and fear I may have put a curse upon the place if Nadline takes up my offer.
Have a pleasant evening all true tennis fans.

its all abt da game Says:

@aleish17,May 18th, 2010 at 12:42 pm
“Federer’s tennis record is great, by far the greatest.”
you mean to say greatest of all time??

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