Most of today’s press seems to be about the final rather than the Monfils match. I guess I can understand that a bit – it was an odd match without a lot of rhythm or momentum either way.
Though Nadal beat Gael Monfils in straight sets in the semifinals, he did not play well. Of particular concern were the number of unforced errors the Spaniard donated throughout the match.
Like a said – a strange match without a lot of rhythm. Rafa was splaying some shots and there were some odd breaks on service on both sides.
“I feel sorry for Gael,” Nadal told reporters. “He did not play his best because of stomach problems and I was thinking more about him than myself.
“I saw him vomit when I went to the toilet after the first set. That disturbed my concentration and afterwards I made more mistakes.”
Seeing someone vomit often disturbs my concentration too.
“I knew Gael was not at his best,” said Nadal, bidding for a second straight hardcourt title after winning the Australian Open.
“It’s not so nice to win like this but I’m very happy to be in this final.
“It’s hard to concentrate, you never know if the opponent is going to retire or play on. In the final I’ll try my best, it’s great to be in a final on a fast surface.”
Nadal broke Monfils in the fifth game of the second set. The top-ranked Spaniard withstood 10 aces by Monfils to earn his first two-set win this week. Nadal lost to Monfils in the quarterfinals at Doha last month for his only loss of the year.
Unless you count exhibitions – he lost an exhibition match (Abu Dhabi) to Murray in January.