Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic spent four hours and 12 minutes at Court Philippe Chatrier. After a four-set match, which ended at 1:15 am, the Spaniard defeated his great rival and advanced to the Roland Garros 2022 semi-finals.
PAP / EPA / Mohamed Badra / Pictured: Rafael Nadal
The 59th showdown for the Giants did not disappoint tennis fans, but it delivered incredible emotions. Gentlemen started the match on Tuesday and finished on Wednesday. No duel was settled in Paris until late. The encounter could have gone on longer, but defender Novak Djokovic did not take the opportunity to finish the fourth set. In the end, Rafael Nadal won 6:2, 4:6, 6:2, 7:6 (4) and will play in the semi-finals of the French International Championship.
Great start, Nadal
It was the beginning of the meeting for Nadal. The ATP rating leader did not fully present his skills and after several failed plays he served him in the first match. It was the Spaniard who moved better on the field and played pools. The Mallorca player also finished twice as many balls in the first set as he made unintended fouls. In addition, he was able to defend himself in a dangerous situation that occurred in the fourth match. Djokovic failed to make up for his escape, so Nadal stepped in. In the fifth inning he earned a break point and with a winning forehand that came in 4:1. The second breakout decided the fate of the first release. Both men probably won with their passes, and in the eighth game the Spaniard finished the match with his first set-ball.
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Great feelings were present in the second part of the duel. He kept putting pressure on Djokovic since the first match. Fans witnessed longer and enjoyable exchanges. He saved “Noll” six break points, but on the seventh time Rafa managed to net. After a while, the 21-time Grand Slam champion confidently kept his order and came out at 2:0. Now he attacked again on replay and worked on a stopping point. Then there was an excellent exchange, which ended with the “Brick King Meal” in response to the opponent’s shortcut.
Renewal in the second group
Djokovic was losing 3-0 with two breakouts, but he did something incredible. He fought the fight to make up for the losses and after an incredible battle he achieved his goal. The Serb clearly improved in response. When his back hand started working, the Spaniard quickly found himself in trouble. Already in the fourth game, the number one in the world ranking made one break. Then there was a sixth 20-minute game in which Nadal made some minor mistakes and lost a pass again.
Fighting broke out in the second set again. At the age of three, Djokovic had a little crisis when he gave his opponent a break point. Nevertheless, he survived with a beautiful job, service and shot. The Serbian won the fourth match in a row and advanced. Now Nadal was under pressure. The Spaniard managed to draw 4, but the opponent did not give up. In the tenth game, Djokovic started to come back and after his opponent’s mistake he got the set ball. He did not manage to use it, but in the second set ball the tennis player from Manacor broke the forehand and the scoreboard was 1 in sets.
Despite a brilliant finish to the second inning, Djokovic did not follow the blow in the third set. The situation with the opening party repeated itself. The ATP leader made more and more mistakes (according to statisticians 16 mistakes), which cost him the loss of the position. The first half was already the opening game of the group. Nol then missed a chance to get back into the match, then Rafa scored a 4-1 break. The group was leveled by the second hack. The passers-by won the following matches and the Spaniard was ahead in the match 2-1.
A missed opportunity for Djokovic
Failure in the earlier part of the match encouraged Djokovic to play better in the fourth set. The Serbian played more aggressively and ended up with more balls. This allowed him to set a stopping point in the second half. Then there was a longer swap and as a result Nadal broke the hash. The Belgrade tennis player’s penetration resulted in only the winger who immediately won the serve 3-0. Then it was 5:2 for the first rocket in the world and then the stairs started.
At 5-3, Djokovic found himself in trouble as he served to win the set. He couldn’t use two sets of balls because Nadal was pushing too hard. In a state of equilibrium, there was a struggle over every point. In the end, the Spaniard scored a break point and after a short exchange he scored a comeback break with a winning forehand. After changing sides, Rafa equalized the set to 5. Then they both watched the pass carefully, so the tiebreaker was decisive. In this game, Nadal played brilliantly. Quickly develop five match balls. The Serb defended three of them, but by the fourth the Spaniard was already successful.
He won the four-set fight and improved the balance of matches against Djokovic to 29-30. The duel was at a high level, although the Serb finished it “in red”. He had 48 winning strikes and 53 non-forced fouls on Tuesday. The Spaniard finished 57 balls and made 43 fouls. In addition, he scored seven breaks, three times more than his top competitor.
The victorious Nadal, for the fifteenth time in his career, advanced to the semi-finals of the Roland Garros tournament and remained in the match to win the fourteenth title at the Paris banquet. It is also his 37th Grand Slam semi-final match. Now he will have two days to prepare for the next match. It will be his German rival Alexander Zverev on Friday, who beat Spain’s Carlos Alcaraz in four sets on Tuesday (more here).
Roland Garros, Paris (France)
Grand Slam, clay courts, prize pool of 43.6 million euros
Tuesday May 31
Rafael Nadal (Spain, 5): beat Novak Djokovic (Serbia, 1) 6-2, 4-6, 6-2, 7-6 (4).
Men’s Championship Program and Results
Ega, you scared us! What happened in the first group?
Four groups in a Hurkacz match!
Report an errorWP SportoweFakty
France Paris ITF Grand Slam ATP Spain Rafael Nadal Serbia Tennis Novak Djokovic Roland Garros
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