Ocho for Rafa. Bravo

11 Jun

Nadal slides to a reverse backhand return to Djokovic.

Raphael Nadal – rarely stretched in his 8th French Open victory.

Raphael Nadal proved once again what we already know. He is the greatest clay court player of this, and probably all generations with a clinical straight sets win over fellow Spaniard David Ferrer. And in a rare quirk of ATP computer treachery, the win saw Nadal drop from #4 to #5 on the rankings, while Ferrer moved up from #5 to #4. I won’t go into detail on the need to “defend” points from the previous 12 months – suffice to say Ferrer making the final was an improvement on 2012, whereas Rafa winning the final was the same result for him. It’s hard to improve on perfection – more on that later.

Rafa becomes the first man to win a Slam 8 times – both Roger Federer and Pete Sampras amassed 7 Wimbledon titles – and Roger will still start pretty close to favourite this year at Wimbledon. I’m not sure if Federer, Djokovic or Murray will be able to stop the runaway train that is Raphael Nadal. He is relishing his time back on court following serious knee trouble that plagued him in 2012.

In his victorious post match press conference, Rafa conceded “sure I have doubts, so I work as hard as I can.. that’s why I am back” David Ferrer summed things up. “Rafa was better than me – he has the best mentality I’ve ever seen in my career.  He has everything, no?”

Spare a thought for the rest of the players on the ATP tour with Rafa’s fitting final words – “I will keep practising with the same passion and intensity to bring my tennis to the highest level possible…in tennis, for sure, you can improve and keep improving”. Scary.

The PRO

* worth reading this earlier post from the PRO on Rafa’s comeback

https://tennistipsfromapro.wordpress.com/2012/10/07/rafa-clay-please-its-easier-on-my-knees/

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