Ready for some happy, fluffy Roland Garros champ lint?
- Nadal Simply Unbeatable on Clay – by Tom Perrotta (wsj.com)
When Nadal won his eighth title last year, it was the greatest feat in men’s tennis history at any single Grand Slam tournament (no other man has won the same major that many times). Now that Nadal has won nine, one has to look beyond tennis and into sports history. There hasn’t been any male athlete anywhere, in any sport, any better at his trade than Nadal is at tennis on clay.
- Nadal Denies Djokovic, and Defies Belief, Once Again – by Christopher Clarey (nytimes.com)
The match turned in the second set, but it was still difficult to know what to expect from either man as they alternated the great, the bad and the ugly; excelling under pressure and wilting under it, too.
- Nadal title run #9 a tribute to his grit – by Steve Flink (tennischannel.com)
Nadal may not have been at his technical best but he was most assuredly at his tactical zenith in this battle. His used of the sliced backhand was timely and telling. He coaxed Djokovic into an awful lot of two-handed backhand errors with the soft slice. Moreover, Nadal’s forehand down the line was dynamic and damaging. That shot combined with his inside out forehand frequently confounded Djokovic.
- Make that nine and counting for Rafa – by Greg Garber (espn.com)
- Per this article, Rafa started cramping in 3rd set. (mangle)
- Brain Game: Rafa’s New Tactics Fell Novak – by Craig O’Shannessy (atpworldtour.com)
Nadal won 3-6, 7-5, 6-2, 6-4 by switching gears from previous matches and relentlessly attacking Djokovic’s forehand, particularly with many more forehands down the line in what was the 42nd meeting between these two giants of the game. Nadal’s forehand was by far the biggest weapon in the final, crushing 27 winners to Djokovic’s 17 as the strategic change in directing traffic away from Djokovic’s stronger backhand delivered more and more baseline control as the final developed.
- Nadal Wins Battle For No. 1; Historic Ninth Roland Garros Crown – via atpworldtour.com
“To me, winning is the result, the equivalent of lots of effort. Therefore, I feel more serene and personally I’m very satisfied.”
- Nadal soars to Cloud Nine – by Kate Battersby (rolandgarros.com)
- Coaches’ reactions to the men’s singles final – via rolandgarros.com
At the end of the fourth set, Rafa was cramping up everywhere and he almost couldn’t go on. We really had to fire him up because we knew that if he didn’t win the fourth, he’d lose the fifth because Novak was stronger than him physically. At the end of the match, when he came up to me in the stands, he told me that we needed to get the doctor to come and see to him because he was really, really exhausted.
- Nadal immortalised following ninth Roland Garros victory – by Matt Trollope (rolandgarros.com)
Sitting down to type the words “Rafael Nadal has won his ninth title at Roland Garros in the past 10 years” is something quite surreal. But it is true.
- It’s Tough To Be The King – by Peter Bodo (tennis.com)
Playing with a beautifully modulated combination of reckless abandon alternating with crafty prudence, Nadal clinched his record ninth title at Roland Garros, frustrating and finally turning back Djokovic’s bid to dethrone the King of Clay, 3-6, 7-5, 6-2, 6-4.
- Racquet Reaction: Nadal d. Djokovic – by Richard Pagliaro (tennis.com)
- Regal Reign Reaches Nine: Nadal Conquers Paris Again – by Chris Oddo (tennisnow.com)
The gaping chasm that now stands between what Nadal has done and what others can only dream of doing has expanded again, and while the Spaniard may be the finest, most athletic specimen to ever step foot on a clay court, he believes that his success correlates directly to his inexhaustible will to win.
- Once again, Nadal proves indestructible on the French Open clay – by Jon Wertheim (si.com)
Still, this rivalry is so entrenched that — even when the aesthetics are lousy — the matches are worth watching for the narrative alone.
- Clay-court king Rafael Nadal is on the verge of becoming the greatest ever – by Chris Chase (usatoday.com)
- Highlights from Rafael Nadal vs. Novak Djokovic in the French Open final – by Courtney Nguyen (si.com)
- Rafael Nadal triumphs against Novak Djokovic to win ninth French Open title – by Courtney Nguyen (si.com)
- How The Roland Garros Final Was Won: Nadal Upends Djokovic – by Josh Meiseles (atpworldtour.com
- Fifty parting thoughts from the 2014 French Open – by Jon Wertheim (si.com)
- Nadal Boosts London Chances With Paris Win – via atpworldtour.com
- Borg: “I’ll just sit back and enjoy the final” – by Baptiste Blanchet (rolandgarros.com)
For me, Nadal is still Nadal. You have to beat him here on centre court at the French Open…Only one player did that and he was Swedish, Robin Söderling. So Rafa is still the favourite. To beat him in a best-of-five match on clay you have to be an unbelievable player.
Nadal says his “love of suffering” is a key to his reign. Love hurts, and he tasted the pain at times today. But he brought the passion to back up that ferocious forehand, chomping the Coupe des Mousquetaires with another romantic bite.
- Nadal: “La clave son todos los momentos del partido” – via rtve.es (Nadal: “The key is every moment of the match”)
- Nadal continúa forjando su leyenda en París – via rtve.es (Nadal continues to forge his legend in Paris)
- Best of Roland Garros 2014
- Match points – 2014 French Open
- Super slide motion
- If you aren’t region blocked: I’m very emotional – post match interview for Eurosport
- If you aren’t region blocked: good hands, Rafa.
- Wilander: Why conditions suit Nadal so much – again, region blocking. (I’m using this to combat that.)
- iB3 report on the final
- Does Rafa think he can win the 2014 French Open? – Rafa remembers his rackets most adorably.
- From the Roland Garros site: match part one, part two, and trophy ceremony
- Roland Garros – Finale – via tennismagazine.fr
- French Open final: Rafael Nadal v Novak Djokovic – in pictures – via theguardian.com
- Nida’s photos from the final
Rafa does social media:
- Rafa says thanks. Silly boy. We are too busy thanking him.
Social media related to Rafa:
I know as soon as I post this, I’ll find an amazing article/video/picture…but I have to stop some time. Anything really cool will have to wait because tomorrow will be a long day for me with work and then a 3 hour class.