WTF: No really, wtf, Stan?

Reuters / Tony O'Brien

Reuters / Tony O’Brien

For his first match in the final tournament of the season, Rafa played #4 Stan Wawrinka. Well, it said Stan on the screen and the body on the court looked like Stan, but it wasn’t playing like Stan. Don’t get me wrong, Rafa was playing well and looked solid, but it’s hard to get a good feel for just how well he was playing because Stan looked like he’d rather be anywhere else. It was a very weird match.

The most important thing, though? Rafa kept his concentration and focus (not to mention, his forehand on target) to win 6-3, 6-2.

Nadal Wawrinka
Statistics on Serve
Aces 1 10
Double Faults 1 3
1st Serve % 61% 60%
1st Serve Points Won 23/31 (74%) 26/43 (60%)
2nd Serve Points Won 11/20 (55%) 10/29 (34%)
Break Points Saved 2/3 (67%) 11/15 (73%)
Service Games Played 9 8
Statistics on Return
1st Return Points Won 17/43 (40%) 8/31 (26%)
Second Return Points Won 19/29 (66%) 9/20 (45%)
Break Points Won 4/15 (27%) 1/3 (33%)
Return Games Played 8 9
Statistics on Points
Total Service Points Won 34/51 (67%) 36/72 (50%)
Total Return Points Won 36/72 (50%) 17/51 (33%)
Total Points Won 70/123 (57%) 53/123 (43%)
Other Stats
Winners 18 29
Unforced errors 12 35
Net Approaches 9/10 (90%) 6/9 (67%)

15 Responses

  1. mallorcanchamp says:

    This was supposed to be another crucial test against a guy who put Rafa in some trouble on their last encounters but Stan looked like he was not in the mood to play today.

    Not gonna say Stan missed more than usual (stats don’t say this compared to Paris match) but you could see he was dreadfully smacking a lot of balls, particularly in the 2nd set. Many viewers sure felt robbed because of Stan’s poor effort.

    I mean, how a player can already throw his racket down at 1-1 first set?

    Rafa did enough. Wait for the self-implosion of his opponent. Solid returning from his BH side. Good serving was not even necessary today.

    Rafa’s got half of his qualification. Now he needs to take at least one set from Murray’s match.

    But this next one is not going to be about qualification. It’s their first match since Madrid final and Rafa is just a different tennis player now. Wednesday’s match becomes very important to make a powerful statement directed to every other top-8 player.

  2. sam says:

    I didn’t see Wawrinka throw his raquet at 1-1 in the first set but considering he had just been broken back to love it would hardly be surprising. I did see him throw it after being broken at 3-4. If he threw it twice shouldn’t he have been given a code violation?

    Don’t understand the surprise at Wawrinka’s play. He was doing what he usually does with a mixture of high risk winners and UFE’s. The stats show this. The score is no surprise. This is a player who hadn’t taken a set off Rafa until the AO final where he faced Rafa injured. In Shanghai Rafa won convincingly. In Paris Rafa served for what would have been a routine 6-4 set and still should have closed out the first set in the tie break. IMO the schedule in Paris played it’s part in their last match in more ways than one.

    Agree that Rafa’s match with Murray is important as far as sending signals. But to do that he needs a convincing victory. Murray is a player that Rafa has owned prior to this year losing just a handful of times and a few of his losses were due to withdrawing injured or playing on when clearly injured. Both Federer and Djokovic have crushed Murray in recent meetings. I’m hoping for a similar result to show Rafa’s progress.

    • Aero says:

      Stan’s problem was his unforced error count, way too high. The commentators also said he looked lethargic on court, out of sorts, his foot work was off. He never capitalized on the short balls Rafa gave him by coming into the net and attacking. This was the inconsistent Stan we have seen before. His first game was a scorcher, and he simply went downhill from there.

      Agreed, the Murray match will indeed be an important one. This is where Rafa’s test lies. I think he now has the game back to beat all below him so its the 4 above that’s left (with 1 already down). Murray can tend to be like Stan, inconsistent but when he is playing good he can be like another Djokovic.

    • mallorcanchamp says:

      Check it out at 1-1 30-30 point but it is not exactly the moment I was refering to. He threw his racket like 4-5 times that I probably gave the wrong score at first. Anyway, if you call yourself a professional you just don’t start throwing your racket down after two games.

      I know Stan is black or white with his game. Redlines or starts missing like a futures level player.That’s the price you pay to command the play and be the aggressor. Even so, his attitude in front of 15k viewers today was especially blameworthy.

      Why he had to throw away this match in the second and don’t a give damn anymore? No Djokovic nor Federer in his group. He had a great opportunity to play another semifinal here, now he has very few chances.

  3. Elizabeth Howard says:

    Stan’s behaviour was petulant. Rafael should have won in Paris and the AO was not a good day for Rafael, he was clearly injured. The most positive aspect is his obvious enjoyment of being on court, playing with confidence, apart from first game. I feel confident v Murray. Rafa is Rafael Nadal, the ultimate warrior and intelligent player.

  4. JayDee50 says:

    I was at the match, sitting courtside in the crowd. Honestly, although it looked like Stan wasn’t giving much of an effort, I think it was just like he said in his post-match presser, that he just had a really bad day at the office. Rafa was particularly strong and impressive tonight and pretty soon Stan realised this. Stan tried, he really did, but Rafa played solid and better and that was how he won. I hope everybody will credit Rafa with solid play and not believe he won just because Stan couldn’t be bothered, because that was NOT the case.

    • JayDee50 says:

      …because after all, it is generally accepted that Stan is an inconsistent player, either very good or very bad, and tonight he was in the latter category.

  5. beachfan says:

    I am always happy when Rafa wins, but I was surprised by Stan’s play. It was, however, similar to their match in Shanghai, I believe, not the one in Paris. Rafa played well and was very happy with his win.

  6. harry houdini says:

    Rafa’s well on his way to owning stan again. :)

    Murray’s always been a tough out for rafa on hard courts. I think Murray will probably take this, but looking for rafa to put up a good fight and take a set.

  7. Roxitova says:

    A day later, I’m still happy over Rafa’s win.
    True, Stan just imploded 2nd set, but I think a lot of that was due to how well Rafa played in the 1rst, and Stan just didn’t have it in him to make the monumental effort required.
    That insane lob Rafa hit off a drop shot destroyed Stan’s mood and bolstered Rafa’s to a huge degree.
    Incredible the difference one great shot can make.

    So Murray tomorrow.
    I haven’t seen Murray play here, but I think Rafa can beat him. That Madrid final was a fiasco, as far as Rafa is concerned.
    Rafa has exacted revenge on every single player who beat him during his slump–except Djok of course, who is in a league by himself. I’m going to take that as a sign. RThough I see most of the posters here don’t expect Rafa to win.
    Hmmm …
    Never liked Murray and maybe that taints my view.

    • Aero says:

      Let’s not forget Fed in that mix as well, especially on indoor hardcourts! His win over Djokovic proves how lethal he is in this environment.

  8. Roxitova says:

    Haha I was right Rafa steamrolled Andy.
    He is back. Make it official.

    • vnk123 says:

      yeah, you are right, but he is still not back to his best. he is might be getting better but not back yet. Hang on…

  9. jodiecate says:

    Yep, there’s our Rafa, that’s him! So happy about this match.
    I was nervous about this match – it was hard to tell exactly where Rafa’s level was at becoz Stan played so badly. But then Andy was all thumbs today as well. As was Novak yesterday. Must be something in the water?

    Great to see Rafa rushing Andy, not allowing him to get his rhythm, making him rush the points and make errors all over the place. That feels right again. Rafa’s moving really well, and looking great too. : ) Happy times.

    • Aero says:

      Agreed, I get nervous when he gets broken in the first service game, this has happened before. However, Rafa’s tenacity doesn’t let it bother his game plan, which is a sign that the old Rafa is returning. Thrilled with this win even though Murray didn’t play his best tennis, but that’s the human side of it, some days are better than others! Rafa won in convincing style. Glad also that Djokovic was beaten by Fed yesterday, it brings him back down to earth! One step at a time, two top fours down, two more to go, if not here then hopefully eventually!