Old Nadal has lost some stamina and indurance

TMF

Talk Tennis Guru
Watching the semifinal against Tsitsipas it has become clear that Nadal doesn't have the endurance/stamina like he use to in his heyday. He couldn't keep up running down every ball anymore, and many times he just quit on it and conceded the point. It wasn't that Tsitsipas was hitting right through him from the baseline, but Nadal doesn't have the legs and energy to keep running for 5 sets. In his 20s, he was the master at sustaining long rally consistently, and breakdown his opponent physically, but in this match it was the opposite, the younger Tsitsipas who outlasted him physically.

In the first 2 sets, Nadal had 10 UFEs, but in the next 3 sets, he had 33. 43 overall
Tsitsipas had twice as much UFEs as Nadal in the first 2 sets, but cut down to 18 in the next 3 sets. 38 overall

Points won: medium rallies(5-8 strokes), points are even at 27 each
Points won: long rallies(9+ strokes), Tsitsipas wins 33 points, Nadal 27


A young Nadal would beat Tsitsipas because his fitness and durability wouldn't have betrayed him.
For some of you who still think age isn't a factor in a very demanding sport like tennis, just watch the match and see for yourself.
 
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MeatTornado

G.O.A.T.
His physical decline has been quite obvious for years now, it's just the way of things. That's why he's adjusted to such a more aggressive game since turning 30 and bringing on Moya.

Remember in 2018 when he started doing a ton of drop shots to end points early? Something Novak started doing last year too. Thankfully both of them finally realized how dumb that strategy was. Then in 2019 we saw him fiddle with the serve, trying to beef it up a bit and end points ASAP with his +1. We all saw how gassed he was during the US Open that year, he had to resort to S&V play in order to outlast Medvedev in the end. And not just the final, he was getting worn down during the Schwartzman and Cilic matches.

But then every year we move on to clay and he beats everyone in straight sets before it can become a problem.
 
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Beckerserve

Legend
Watching the semifinal against Tsitsipas it has become clear that Nadal doesn't have the endurance/stamina like he use to in his heyday. He couldn't keep up running down every ball anymore, and many times he just quit on it and conceded the point. It wasn't that Tsitsipas was hitting right through him from the baseline, but Nadal doesn't have the legs and energy to keep running for 5 sets. In his 20s, he was the master at sustaining long rally consistently, and breakdown his opponent physically, but in this match it was the opposite, the younger Tsitsipas who outlasted him physically.

In the first 2 sets, Nadal had 10 UFEs, but in the next 3 sets, he had 33. 43 overall
Tsitsipas had twice as much UFEs as Nadal in the first 2 sets, but cut down to 18 in the next 3 sets. 38 overall

Points won: medium rallies(5-8 strokes), points are even at 27 each
Points won: long rallies(9+ strokes), Tsitsipas wins 33 points, Nadal 27


A young Nadal would beat Tsitsipas because his fitness and durability wouldn't have betrayed him.
For some of you who still think age isn't a factor in a very demanding sport like tennis, just watch the match and see for yourself.
Nadal had a back injury. Obviously was an issue today for the reasons you mentioned above. Trolls will ignore the facts but Rafa did well making the QF.
He is playing well and if he can stay fit he should win FO and USO (if crowds are back in NY)
 

Beckerserve

Legend
His physical decline has been quite obvious for years now, it's just the way of things. That's why he's adjusted to such a more aggressive game since turning 30 and bringing on Moya.

Remember in 2018 when he started doing a ton of drop shots to end points early? Something Novak started doing last year too. Thankfully both of them finally realized how dumb that strategy was. Then in 2019 we saw him fiddle with the serve, trying to beef it up a bit and end points ASAP with his +1. We all saw how gassed he was during the US Open that year, he had to resort to S&V play in order to outlast Medvedev in the end. And not just the final, he was getting worn down during the Schwartzman and Cilic matches.

But then every year we move on to clay and he beats everyone in straight sets before it can become a problem.
Agreed. His back also was an issue as well to compound the issues you raise.
 

DRII

G.O.A.T.
Wow, stating the obvious as if it's profound...

Djokovic is in the same boat. Federer's boat has sailed and might come to Port only a couple times a year.
 

Beckerserve

Legend
True, but that can also kinda be lumped into aging in a way. I know this AO was under unique circumstances, but in general the older these guys get, the more bumps and bruises they'll carry in to a tournament and the longer it takes to recover.
Definitely. Rafa is nearing the end of his career. He knows it as well. His reaction after the match and in his presser was telling, disappointed but not dejected like he usually is after a slam loss.
I keep saying it but bagging no.20 has changed his mindset. He wants to win but i think from now on losses will not sting much unless to Federer and Djokovic.
Took a pandemic to actually knock Federer and Nadal off .
 

DRII

G.O.A.T.
Definitely. Rafa is nearing the end of his career. He knows it as well. His reaction after the match and in his presser was telling, disappointed but not dejected like he usually is after a slam loss.
I keep saying it but bagging no.20 has changed his mindset. He wants to win but i think from now on losses will not sting much unless to Federer and Djokovic.
Took a pandemic to actually knock Federer and Nadal off .
Then he and the wife can start having kids. Nadal isn't the type to be a father and top tennis player.
 

Demented

Semi-Pro
Let's not forget that there's a reason he's only won 1 AO and this year was especially fast. It's not shocking that his current style of play wasn't going to succeed against the top echelon. He's also had relatively little warm up which I think has historically also hurt his AO chances.
 

Beckerserve

Legend
Then he and the wife can start having kids. Nadal isn't the type to be a father and top tennis player.
Yes i think he may retire end of this season depending on pandemic stuff. His comments after the match were interesting. Federer in same boat.
Djokovic is obsessed at catching them and will play another 5 years trying. I think he left it too late. Dont see Djokovic winning a Major after this AO. Maybe Wimbledon but he is also getting slower each event.
 

MeatTornado

G.O.A.T.
Definitely. Rafa is nearing the end of his career. He knows it as well. His reaction after the match and in his presser was telling, disappointed but not dejected like he usually is after a slam loss.
I keep saying it but bagging no.20 has changed his mindset. He wants to win but i think from now on losses will not sting much unless to Federer and Djokovic.
Took a pandemic to actually knock Federer and Nadal off .
There's also a chance his back is more sore than he let on and he's low-key relieved to be done playing. He might know it would've been hell to still go through Medvedev-Djokovic if he survived today.
 

Beckerserve

Legend
There's also a chance his back is more sore than he let on and he's low-key relieved to be done playing. He might know it would've been hell to still go through Medvedev-Djokovic if he survived today.
Yes i think defending last years points was his primary goal. He will probably have 4-6 weeks off now.
 

Sudacafan

Talk Tennis Guru
So crazy, because he never misses those, and then he misses two. :X3:
As I said in another post, that sequence of events ate his mind.
This is maybe the first "mental loss" I saw from Nadal (the typical kind from Federer). Nadal showing respect for his friend (a bromance so well depicted in your avi).
When your mind does not work, you feel tired, without stamina, etc.
 
Yes i think he may retire end of this season depending on pandemic stuff. His comments after the match were interesting. Federer in same boat.
Djokovic is obsessed at catching them and will play another 5 years trying. I think he left it too late. Dont see Djokovic winning a Major after this AO. Maybe Wimbledon but he is also getting slower each event.
It's hard to imagine pro tennis without Federer or Nadal, but it has to happen sooner or later.
 

Sephiroth

Hall of Fame
Man I remember watching Rafa in the mid 2000s with insane defence and stamina I was just watching the Coria 5 setter few weeks ago and bloody hell he looked like he go on forever.

But yeah the physical decline is huge. That's why he plays so offensive to compensate the physical decline and why you see how he finishes matches easily these days but if it goes past 4 sets, it's a different ball game.
 

Phenomenal

New User
Stop with this.
He was short of two impossible and uncharacteristic overhead misses.
Had that tiebreaker ended as it should, we would be talking of Nadal the Invincible for Whom The Passage of Time is Irrelevant, and Who Eats Nextgenners for Breakfast.
Stop reminding those overheads everytime specially first. Feeling worse each time. We and him also shouldn't ignore the fact that after the third set Tsitsipas played very well. Rafa idk look exhausted but still played good in the fifth not 4th.
 

Phenomenal

New User
İ think like others pointed out he lost stamina not the same physically so age is factor. But i think it is more about 2 things for me. When i watch Rafa's press conferences he said many times he was practicising well feeling great until that back issue and he didn't prepare well. Said so many times didn't make the proper preparation. Even in RG his movement was not looking until SF- F. When he prepare well and says need to step forward he moves better next matches. In this match his movement was good first few sets. He lost third which was his mistake but can't win everymatch in 3. So i think because of preparation he wasn't ready for long matches. Still played good fifth set though.

Other thing i think his confidence (someone mentioned also). Rafa usually makes next gen miserable don't give them many chances. Playing with high level all the time and they started lose their control, level of play and losing the match. After third Tsitsipas get that boost on his confidence and played very well and he stayed the match in third didn't lose his control)
 

Sudacafan

Talk Tennis Guru
Stop reminding those overheads everytime specially first. Feeling worse each time. We and him also shouldn't ignore the fact that after the third set Tsitsipas played very well. Rafa idk look exhausted but still played good in the fifth not 4th.
I just remind those balls because I don't agree with the general discourse here. Sorry if it hurts.
 

Phenomenal

New User
No, it's okey accepted the loss, i mean relieved. In the match i thought Rafa would crush him atleast will play great and take 4th. But when i see their both level i thought, remembered about that misses in TB. and started to doubt about winning.
 

USO

Hall of Fame
Watching the semifinal against Tsitsipas it has become clear that Nadal doesn't have the endurance/stamina like he use to in his heyday. He couldn't keep up running down every ball anymore, and many times he just quit on it and conceded the point. It wasn't that Tsitsipas was hitting right through him from the baseline, but Nadal doesn't have the legs and energy to keep running for 5 sets. In his 20s, he was the master at sustaining long rally consistently, and breakdown his opponent physically, but in this match it was the opposite, the younger Tsitsipas who outlasted him physically.

In the first 2 sets, Nadal had 10 UFEs, but in the next 3 sets, he had 33. 43 overall
Tsitsipas had twice as much UFEs as Nadal in the first 2 sets, but cut down to 18 in the next 3 sets. 38 overall

Points won: medium rallies(5-8 strokes), points are even at 27 each
Points won: long rallies(9+ strokes), Tsitsipas wins 33 points, Nadal 27


A young Nadal would beat Tsitsipas because his fitness and durability wouldn't have betrayed him.
For some of you who still think age isn't a factor in a very demanding sport like tennis, just watch the match and see for yourself.
He didn't have the best preparation because of his back injury which didn't allow him to train as usual or to play warm up matches at the ATP Cup, and of course the quarantine didn't help anyone especially someone of his age.

So I wouldn't judge his stamina based on his performance at this tournament... There were a lot of factors that didn't help him be 100% ready.

We will see how the rest of the year will unfold for him but with Club 20 under the bag it's all a bonus from now on. It would a much worse situation if he was at still 19 slams. I can't imagine the kind of pressure Djokovic is under trying to chase the 20-mark.
 
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