Another Master Serious 1000 clay final and Rafa faces another Spaniard – this time, #17 David Ferrer. Oh, and there was a 3rd opponent this day: the rain. Both players were holding serve when play was halted for rain in the 9th game of the 1st set. When they returned, David finished his hold, but was broken in the 12th game and the first set was Rafa’s 7-5. Rafa broke in the 3rd game of the 2nd set and play was then suspended for 2 hours. As it turns out, they could have just called it a day then. Rafa went on to break for 5-2 and served it out the next game. Rafa wins his 5th Rome Master and ties Agassi’s record of 17 Masters: 7-5, 6-2.
|Statistics on Serve|
|1st Serve %||80%||72%|
|1st Serve Points Won||34/44 (77%)||36/58 (62%)|
|2nd Serve Points Won||7/11 (64%)||9/23 (39%)|
|Break Points Saved||1/1 (100%)||10/13 (77%)|
|Service Games Played||10||10|
|Statistics on Return|
|1st Return Points Won||22/58 (38%)||10/44 (23%)|
|Second Return Points Won||14/23 (38%)||4/11 (36%)|
|Break Points Won||3/13 (23%)||0/1 (%)|
|Return Games Played||10||10|
|Statistics on Points|
|Total Service Points Won||41/55 (75%)||45/81 (56%)|
|Total Return Points Won||36/81 (44%)||14/55 (25%)|
|Total Points Won||77/136 (57%)||59/136 (43%)|
|Net Approaches||13/17 (43%)||7/13 (35%)|
As it happened blatherings:
Ah, they do the prom picture before the coin toss – this means Rafa can run to the baseline right after without having to stop. Heh. Looks like Rafa won the toss and will receive.
Carlos Bernades in the chair.
David starts us off with a serve that Rafa can’t get back: 15-0. Long rally with Rafa at first moving David right and left and then picking on his backhand ends with a wild miss hit forehand from Rafa: 30-0. Rafa steps in on a short backhand from David and fires off a forehand winner: 30-15. Rafa fires off a forehand that David can’t make it to. Rafa’s return of serve is long: 40-30. David nets a backhand – looked like he was going for a drop shot: deuce. Rafa sends a service return long: game point. A forehand winner from David and he takes the first game.
Looks like it’s raining there.
Drop shot from Rafa that David barely tracks down, but the reply is long: 30-0. Ace: 40-0. Rafa sends a forehand long: 40-15. A long rally ends with a short angled forehand winner from Rafa: 1-1.
Rafa’s backhand service return goes long: 15-0. David’s serve is called out, Rafa looks at the mark says it is good, 1st serve. Drop shot that Rafa tracks down, but the backhand reply goes well wide: 30-0. Rafa miss hits a service return: 40-0. David’s backhand is wide: 40-15. Ace.
risha_: Is it slightly crazy that Rafa’s disgusted, “that was a shite drop shot, can’t believe i hit that” face is something I find ADORABLE? Yeahhh
Another miss hit from Rafa: 0-15. David nets the service return: 15-15. David’s backhand is wide: 30-15. David picking on Rafa’s forehand until he draws an error: 30-30. David takes control of the point with a fierce forehand, but Rafa will have none of that and passes him with a fierce shot of his own. 40-30. Rafa holds for 2-2.
Ataraxis00: I don’t like the Chia Pet look. Rafa needs to shave.
David drops; Rafa replies; David’s lob is just wide: 0-15. David slips, but it didn’t seem likely he was going to get to the shot anyway: 0-30. Rafa sends a forehand wide: 15-30. David sends a forehand well wide: 15-40. Rafa frames a service return: 30-40. Another error from Rafa: deuce. David into the net and hits a decent volley, but Rafa fires a forehand cross court passing shot: break point. David pulls Rafa in with a drop shot, Rafa returns down the line and David hits a cross court backhand passing shot winner: deuce. Again David’s serve is call out, but Rafa overrules and it’s 1st serve. David can’t get a deep slice from Rafa back over the net: break point. Pushed deep, Rafa can’t get a backhand into the court: deuce. Fierce forehand down the line winner from Rafa: break point. David responds with his own forehand winner: deuce. David pushes Rafa wide and draws a forehand error: game point. A forehand winner and David holds for 3-2.
TennisLuvah: Rafa’s bp conversion still kinda sucking ass lol :/
loltennis: @nadalnews and he doesn’t have an excuse like yesterday because ferrer is nowhere as big a server as gulbis
Rafa nets a backhand: 0-15. Forehand down the line winner from Rafa: 15-15. Rafa into the net, but the volley sits up a bit and David hits a winner: 15-30. The windy is waving hello. Serve, defensive reply, Rafa into the net for a winner: 30-30. Rafa hits a forehand behind David for a clean winner: 40-30. Again: 3-3.
Double fault: 0-15. David nets a ball: 0-30. Aggressive play from David pays off: 15-30. Rafa sends a forehand into the net: 30-30. Rafa nets a service return: 40-30. Again and David holds.
kefuoe: Ferrer grunting like he means it now.
What a point! Up, back, behind the back, oh crap, I’m running the wrong way…it had it all. Finished with an overhead winner from Rafa: 15-0. David nets a backhand: 30-0. At 40-0, Rafa sends a shot long and then starts trying to get something out of his eye: 40-15. Rafa holds for 4-4.
Rain is picking up.
Ataraxis00: Rafa’s range is still off. This set should have been over.
Ball kids missed a ball and Rafa’s not happy about it. Rafa nets service return ball: 30-0. Again: 40-0. Rafa pulls David wide and draws an error: 40-15.
I made a vid of the point of awesomeness during the delay: here.
Players back on the court and warming up.
Double fault: 40-30. With a drop shot of perfection, Ferrer holds for 5-4.
Rafa miss times a backhand: 0-15. Rafa nets a forehand: 0-30. Second serve. David nets the return: 15-30. Second serve. David nets a drop shot attempt: 30-30. Pulled wide, David nets a service return: 40-30. David tries to finish off a point with an aggressive forehand, but it’s out: 5-5.
Rafa nets a ball: 15-0. Fierce down the line forehand winner from Rafa: 15-15. Rafa really shouldn’t have let that one ball bounce, but he still manages to win the point: 15-30. Two defensive shots from Rafa, David tees off on a forehand and Rafa’s reply is just out: 30-30. Rafa nets a forehand: 40-30. David goes for a forehand, but it’s wide: deuce. This time, the same forehand works for him: game point. David stepping into the court nicely there. Forehand down the line winner from the baseline for Rafa: deuce. Good serve from David and Rafa can’t get the ball back into play: game point. Second serve. Double fault (oh, Daveeeed): deuce. Forehand from David is wide: break point. David nets a forehand and Rafa breaks for 6-5.
TennisConnected: Gaston Gaudio is the only player to defeat Nadal three times on Clay. Federer has two wins.
Ataraxis00: Uncle Toni approves of the aggressive approach. So do I. Rafa is still off a bit, but breaks anyway.
A long rally ends with Rafa sending a forehand long: 0-15. Ferrer’s turn: 15-15. Short defensive shot from Rafa, David steps in and taps a drop shot winner: 15-30. Ace down the middle: 30-30. Playing inside the court, David hits an angled backhand winner: 30-40. David can’t get a service return back into the court: deuce. Hugging the baseline, Rafa moves David left,right and back and then comes into the net for a winning volley: game and set point. Rafa holds and takes the first set 7-5. 67 minutes; 78% first serves in; 16 winners; 14 UFEs; 9/11 net points won.
TennisLuvah: Hope winning the first set can help him relax a little. He’s playing a bit tight, IMO.
Rafa pulls David out wide, follows it into the net and pops off a nice backhand volley winner: 15-30. David nets a forehand: 15-40. Lovely backhand winner from David: 30-40. Pushed back, Rafa sends a ball long: deuce. Lovely forehand winner from David: game point. David nets a ball: deuce. Rafa nets a second serve return: game point. A forehand from David goes just long: deuce. Pushed deep and wide, Rafa nets a forehand: game point. Another nice drop shot from David and holds: 1-0.
A dropper pulls Rafa into the net and he knocks off a winner: 15-0. Nice backhand winner from Rafa: 30-0. David sends a shot wide: 40-0. With an ace down the middle, Rafa holds at love.
A long rally ends with Rafa at the net (chased down a short defensive ball from David) and knocking off a winner: 0-15. Rafa’s shot is called long, questioned and Carlos overrules. Hawkeye confirms it caught a smidge of the line. David’s shot is out: 0-30. David nets a backhand: 0-40. Second serve. David pushes Rafa well deep with a fierce backhand: 15-40. Rafa sends a forehand wide: 30-40. Fierce down the line forehand that Rafa can’t really get a racket on – he tripped trying to get there: deuce. David sends a shot out: break point. Rafa breaks for a 2-1 lead.
kefuoe: With all this rain, I’m wondering if these boys might be more comfortable playing shirtless.
Play suspended due to rain.
And about two hours later, the players are back on court to start a warm up.
Rafa adds a bit of a skip-jump to his run back to the service line.
David seems content to just send some short balls back. Rafa eventually pushes him deep and wide to draw an error: 15-0. David tries to step in, but Rafa pushes him back again and draws an error: 30-0. David sends a ball wide: 40-0. Oooo…nice, Rafa. He holds at love for a 3-1 lead.
Serve out wide, Rafa nets the reply: 15-0. Repeat into opposite corner: 30-0. David nets a forehand: 30-15. Rafa goes for a down the line winner, but it’s just wide: 40-15. Another serve out wide that Rafa can’t really get to. David holds for 2-3.
How did Rafa get to and hit a winner off that wide forehand? Amaze: 30-15. Pushed back, he hits a backhand wide: 30-30. Rafa holds for 4-2.
David does a good job of moving Rafa and then manages to chase down Rafa’s drop shot and give a nice volley return. He smacks Rafa’s next volley attempt for a winner: 15-0. Backhand winner from Rafa: 15-15. Double fault: 15-30. Again! 15-40. Then he sends a ball long. I think that’s called breaking your own serve. Rafa can serve it out next.
Rafa pushes David deep and draws him wide and gets an error: 15-0. David sends a backhand long: 30-0. Rafa miss hits a forehand: 30-15. Pushed deep and wide, David sends a floater back and Rafa knocks it off at the net for a winner: championship point. David’s shot goes long and Rafa wins: 7-5, 6-2. His 5th Rome Masters and he’s now tied with Agassi’s 17 Masters titles.