IW: Grumpy guss goes down
After a 3 hour and 38 minute rain delay (in the desert), Rafa and Roger took to the court in cold and windy conditions to play their semifinal match at Indian Wells. Fed came out firing. Rafa fired back. Until he didn’t. I know if it was the conditions, Fed’s play or what, but Rafa just looked like he wasn’t feeling it for huge chunks of the match. He lost the first set and was down a double break in the 2nd, when he got fired up as Fed was serving for the match. Rafa broke. He held and was down match point the next game when it started to rain. There was a short delay, but then Federer aced to win: 6-3, 6-4.
|Statistics on Serve|
|1st Serve %||71%||64%|
|1st Serve Points Won||23/40 (58%)||23/36 (64%)|
|2nd Serve Points Won||7/16 (44%)||13/20 (65%)|
|Break Points Saved||2/6 (33%)||2/4 (50%)|
|Service Games Played||9||10|
|Statistics on Return|
|1st Return Points Won||13/36 (36%)||17/40 (43%)|
|Second Return Points Won||7/20 (35%)||9/16 (56%)|
|Break Points Won||2/4 (50%)||4/6 (67%)|
|Return Games Played||10||9|
|Statistics on Points|
|Total Service Points Won||30/56 (54%)||36/56 (64%)|
|Total Return Points Won||20/56 (36%)||26/56 (46%)|
|Total Points Won||50/112 (45%)||62/11 (564%)|
|Net Approaches||3/4 (75%)||12/13 (92%)|
As it happened blatherings:
Fed won the toss and serves to get us started. Nice forehand winner: 15-30. Fed sends a backhand wide: 15-40. Ace: 30-40. Nice serve that Rafa can’t get back over the net. And again: game point. Another good serve, this time Fed knocks off the sitter reply. 1-0.
Nice hitting from both men; point ends on a backhand winner from Rafa: 15-0. Second serve. Fed’s approach is long: 30-0. Second serve. Fierce forehand from Fed – Rafa can’t do anything about it: 30-15. Another good forhand from Fed: 30-30. Fed’s backhand down the line is wide: 40-30. Fed into the net on a great shot, Rafa’s reply is a sitter, Fed knocks off a winner: deuce. Rafa challenges a serve call and it was good – first serve. Beautiful backhands from Fed and he has a break point. Wonderfully angled backhand return from Fed, he’s into the net and breaks for a 2-0 lead.
Fed nets a backhand: 0-15. Again: 0-30. 15-30. Deep shot from Fed draws an error off Rafa’s backhand: 30-30. Both players run each other with Fed picking on Rafa’s backhand until he can fire off his own forehand winner: 40-30. And he holds for 3-0.
Fed nets a backhand: 15-0. Fed’s backhand down the line is just out – Fed challenges, but the call was good: 30-0. Drop shot fail: 40-0. Deep shot from Rafa draws an error and he holds for 1-3.
Fed’s forehand is just wide: 0-15. Fed runs Rafa all over the place until he runs out of time: 15-15. Beautiful backhand return of serve winner up the line from Rafa: 15-30. Long rally ends after Rafa slices a low backhand and Fed’s reply is out: 15-40. Vintage Rafa runs down everything, Fed nets a ball…Rafa breaks for 2-3. Back on serve.
Longish Ralley ends with Rafa sending a backhand wide: 0-15. Nice angle from Rafa and Fed nets a ball: 15-15. Nice serve down the middle: 30-15. I miss a point: 40-15. Fed pushes Rafa back and draws an error: 40-30. Beautifully angled forehand winner from Fed: deuce. Fed sends a forehand long: game point. Rafa paints the baseline, follows it into the net and knocks off a winner to hold: 3-3.
Fed into the net and Rafa’s pass is long: 15-0. Fed knocks off another winner from the net: 40-0. It’s getting windier… Second serve. Rafa’s return is out and Fed holds at love: 4-3.
“Rock the Casbah” being played during the changeover. I approve.
Second serve. Beautiful backhand winner from Fed: 0-15. Nice serve: 15-15. That serve landed halfway in between the serve line and the baseline. Fed into the net, Rafa runs down the dropper, but sends it long: 15-30. Nice serve out wide to Fed’s backhand and his reply is long: 30-30. Nice serve again: 40-30. Second serve. Fed pounces on the second serve: deuce. Fed pulls Rafa wide, follows the shot into the net and knocks off Rafa’s defensive reply: break point. Rafa sends a backhand long and Fed breaks for a 5-3 lead.
Serve out wide, fierce forehand into the opposite corner: 15-0. Second serve. Rafa hits the reply into the middle of the net: 30-0. Nice return from Rafa, but Fed sends a backhand winner back: 40-0. Second serve. That’s how you serve out a set, Rafa. Fed holds at love to take the first set 6-3. Rafa didn’t even run to that last drop shot.
41 minutes; 0 aces/doubles; 75% 1st serves in; 55% won on 1st; 43% on 2nd; 4 winners; 6 UFEs; 1/2 at net.
Aggressive forehand from Rafa and he follows it into the net and knocks off a winner: 15-0. So-so approach from Fed and Rafa passes: 30-0. Players try to angle each other off the court until Fed’s down the line shot is wide: 40-0. Rafa holds at love to start set 2. Pimmy saying there’s some rain drops…
Ace: 15-0. Second serve. Fed mishits a forehand badly: 15-15. Rafa’s turn: 30-15. Courts are getting slick. Chair tells the players to sit down for a bit. Both guys have their jackets on trying to stay warm. Fed wanted a potty-break, but chair discourages it. Oh, now they are playing again. Nice volley: 40-15. Second serve. Rafa nets a ball and Fed holds for 1-1.
Deep shots from Fed – taking advantage of playing into the wind: 0-15. Second serve. Amazing forehand down the line winner from Fed: 0-30. Second serve and Fed tees off on it: 0-40. Rafa nets a backhand and is broken at love. 1-2
Someone is very much not happy with the windy and is playing like a grumpy guss.
0-15. Second serve. Fed into the net: 15-15. Nice serve: 30-15. Ace: 40-15. Fed holds for 3-1.
Fed into the net, Rafa lobs to push him back, but then hits a forehand winner off a ball that was blowing all over the place: 0-15. Fed winner from mid-court: 15-30. Again: 15-40. Nice serve down the middle: 30-40. (Followed by a Vamos!) Second serve (he went for the same serve as last one). Fed nets a forehand, Rafa lets out a “si!” – deuce. Fed’s backhand is wide: game point. Rafa holds for 2-3.
I’m remembering Rafa saying his foot hurts more when it’s cold. Wondering if it’s bothering him. (Not trying to make excuses – wondering)
Fed storms the net and nets his forehand: 0-15. Deep second serve handcuffs Rafa: 15-15. Service winner: 30-15. Perfect serve, more perfect return: 30-30. Ace: 40-30. Ace…Rafa challenges and it was out. Fed nets a forehand: deuce. Nice serve return, but Rafa sends his next forehand out: game point. Fed into the net and he hold for 4-2.
Pimmy saying Rafa fiddling with his left foot/toe…something on his left side.
Net cord pops Rafa’s ball out: 0-15. Nice backhand down the line and he follows it in to knock off the winner: 15-15. Fed leans left, Rafa serves right: 30-15. Second serve. Rafa’s backhand down the line is wide: 30-30. Rafa double faults to break point. Rafa double faults to break point. Then, when pushed back, sends a backhand well out. Fed breaks for 5-2.
Rafa hits his second forehand winner of the match: 0-30. Rafa totally mishits a low backhand: 15-30. Nice forehand winner from Rafa: 15-40. Double break point for Rafa… and he breaks with aggressive play. Still down a break: 3-5.
Double fault: 0-15. Fed sends a backhand wide: 15-15. Rafa moves Fed well and draws an error: 30-15. Rafa nets a forehand: 30-30. Again, Rafa runs Fed and gets a forehand error: 40-30. Rafa holds for 4-5.
Rafa took a super-quick potty break – didn’t delay play.
Fed sends a backhand long: 15-15. Second serve. Double fault: 15-30. Mirka does not look amused. Second serve. Nice serve out wide, weak reply from Rafa: 30-30. Second serve. Rafa gets the forehand he wants…and nets it. Match point. Pimmy saying it’s raining hard. After a sit down and a towel off, we are back. Ace and Fed wins.