Rafination* in Rod Laver Arena

Intense forehand (Photo by TORSTEN BLACKWOOD/AFP/Getty Images)

Intense forehand (Photo by TORSTEN BLACKWOOD/ AFP/ Getty Images)


Rochus was rafinated** today as he lost to Rafa 6-0 6-2 6-2 in a mere 77 minutes. Rafa produced winner after winner, but it’s a bit difficult to get a true gauge for how he’s playing given the level of competition. Rochus was a good sport and able to smile despite the beat down he was receiving.

According to Brad Gilbert, Rafa has changed his forehand preparation (adding a “hitch” to it) and position on serve (moving his feet a bit closer together and his back leg to the right). I didn’t notice a forehand hitch, but did see a more compact backswing.

Some stats for Rafa:
Aces: 10
1st Serve %: 66% (35/53)
Win % on 1st serve: 91% (32/35)
Win % on 2nd serve: 67% (12/18)
Double Faults: 2
Winners: 47
Unforced Errors: 18
Receiving Points Won: 55% (41/74)
Break Point Conversions: 64% (7/11)
Total Points Won: 83
Net Approaches: 89% (8/9)

*I got up at 4am – after 2 hours of sleep – and had to wait an hour for the match to start. I can make up stupid words if I want to. BTW, that’s Rafa + domination.

** I didn’t say I’d stop at one.