The Only Statistic That Matters From "The Match"

Discussion in 'Pro Match Results and Discussion' started by winstonplum, Jan 30, 2012.

  1. winstonplum

    winstonplum Hall of Fame

    May 14, 2010
    First of all, I didn't think Rafa had a chance in hell to win this. It would have been another workmanlike victory for Nole in four sets if not for an epic hold in the eighth game of the fourth set and some uncharacteristic UE by Nole in the 4th set TB. Nadal fans can write, talk, scream until they're blue in the face about Rafa crowding the baseline more, attacking more, etc. It's never going to happen. His tennis DNA is to give ground, retrieve, defend, carefully wait for his spot to unleash a FH. But one stat, and one stat only, gives Nadal the key to his next victory against NOole. Average Second Serve Speed

    Nadal was neck and neck with with Nole in 1st serve points won and pretty close in first serve speed. But he plummeted when it came to second 2nd serve points one. Why? Because he takes too much off of them. He's very conservative and cautious, but as BG would say, "He's got to litter up the stat sheet." More aces, more double faults. He's facing the best returner in the world (Murray is a distant second). Laying it in because he's worried about double faulting doesn't work. The reason the match went five was because his 1st was better than it's been since USO '10. Even when Nadal hammers a first serve, Nole's return often makes the point neutral. Laying in a second serve is a recipe for immediately losing the point. Go far more on the second serve the next time they meet. More double faults? Who cares. Fortune favors the bold, and Nole is consistently bolder in ever aspect of play. End of strategy discussion with Uncle Toni.
  2. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

    May 3, 2004
    FT. Lauderdale, Florida
    Nadal simply needs to go to a larger frame and more forgiving string.

    Secondly, adding weight to his frame cost him the match when he missed that down the line backhand. That extra weight resulted in him swinging just a tad late.

  3. ledwix

    ledwix Hall of Fame

    Jun 6, 2010
    I seriously doubt that five hours into a match he is still getting used to the speed of his swing. Highly doubt that.

    As for second serve speed, it is not only that but also the amazing return of Djokovic on first serves. Notice how he would sometimes effortless punch inside out forehand winners on the first serve return or bunt it back to six inches from the line and handcuff Nadal into a miss-hit shank.
  4. Federer_pilon

    Federer_pilon Semi-Pro

    Jul 11, 2007
    This is getting old... You're probably the most repetitive poster here..
  5. winstonplum

    winstonplum Hall of Fame

    May 14, 2010
    No doubt. He might be the greatest returner in the history of tennis. He's insane; that's why Nadal can't give him meatballs on the second serve.
  6. TennisFan3

    TennisFan3 Legend

    Dec 4, 2009
    Nadal served his second serves like the women in WTA do.

    Forget about UsOpen 2010, at no point in 2010, was his average 2nd serve speed as LOW as it is right now.

    What did Nadal think? He will beat Djokovic by pushing in his second serve?
  7. Telepatic

    Telepatic Legend

    May 5, 2008
    Serbia, Belgrade
    Rafito should try right hand with Wilson, bamos.
  8. stringertom

    stringertom Bionic Poster

    Sep 10, 2010
    On the lam from the sewretchian vortex
    Second serve MPH(KPH) is only a symptom. What is the cause? POOR mechanics. Start with his delivery stance...what good server starts with his front foot almost parallel with the sidelines? No wonder his shoulder is achy.
  9. statto

    statto Professional

    Sep 12, 2009
    The only stat that matters is three sets to two.
  10. purge

    purge Hall of Fame

    Sep 22, 2011
    the funny thing is that it seems like djokovic is gonna keep returning deep regardless of how fast or good you serve.

    i think nadals problem lies elsewhere. ever since he started optimizing his serve speed by transferring his weight forward into the serve more he has struggled massively with the depth of djokos returns. thats cause the serve motion now takes him further into the court.

    which is fine if youre getting a short return or want to come to the net anyway but a deep return the likes of which you will get from the djoker these days will likely land on your shoe laces. and nadal simply isnt the natutally gifted halfvolleyer that federer is. seriously the dude can play halfvolleys and semi-halfvolleys around the baseline like no one else in history. its ridiculous.

    but nadal needs the ball to come up after the bounce in order to smack it. so what i think he needs is to find a way of incorporating a faster recovery step that will get him back to a neutral rally position right behind the baseline ASAP before the deep return catches him with his pants down

    PSNELKE Legend

    Dec 22, 2009
    Nadal's second serve = Djokovic Return Winner.

    Notice how Novak would rip all those returns DTL, CC, IO.
    Just a proove how enormously great Novak's return is, but Nadal's second serve was definately making it way to easy for Nole.
    That second serve was WTA-Like.
  12. Wilander Fan

    Wilander Fan Hall of Fame

    Jan 26, 2010
    Nadal's serve (either one) is just mediocre but to Noles credit, everyone tries this strategy but only Nole pulls it off. The other guys feel like they have to hit a winner since its probably the shortest ball they will get that point and they miss alot. Nole is probably the only player that feels like he will win the baseline duel against Nadal so he just hits it deep and safe right at him. Not looking for winners but a weak reply to start off the point. It was a GREAT tactic. Nadal could not stretch his arms and could only half volley back. I am surprised Nadal was not broken more. Nole wants to engage in long backcourt battles. He is a much more patient player.

    Its a different story for Fed. Those Nole Fed matches are much closer since Fed has a great 2nd serve.
  13. Mike Sams

    Mike Sams Legend

    Sep 2, 2011
    And how many routine shots did Djokovic miss prior to that which would've allowed him to win the match in 4 sets? :lol:
  14. tlm

    tlm Legend

    Jul 21, 2004

    I can agree with this post, but i think that jokers return of serve is what made the difference.
  15. Tammo

    Tammo Banned

    May 23, 2011
    Actually, the most important stat is how many sets won :)
  16. DunlopMax200G

    DunlopMax200G Rookie

    Jan 21, 2007
    Totally agree with winstonplum. People can dissect whichever way you want and come up with ways Nadal can beat Djokovic at their next meeting. Nadal said he has never been so positive after losing a match. He meant that that Djokovic is not untouchable. People also forget that this was a 4 set match that went 5 and Djokovic was not at his best. I also can't see Djokovic not making any changes to counter Nadal's presumed improvements such as playing closer to baseline, volleying more, mixing up serve even more, improving 2nd serve, and copying Djokovic's return game. How is Nadal gonna get over the mental aspect of losing to Djokovic seven in a row? On to US 1000 masters. Answer coming up in March.
  17. bullfan

    bullfan Legend

    Sep 19, 2011
    Djokovic wanted to match Rafa's 2 5 setters to seem bigger than life. Novak kept looking tired as he lost before winning both matches.... The stats on this AU Open suck raw eggs for both. I compared them to Wimbledon 2008 and there's no comparison. Wimbledon 2008 was a far more interesting and superior match. Sure, Rafa wiffed during the 4th TB, but the match as a whole was far superior to the longevity of AU2012. Rafa and Novak are the longest dawdlers out there and that totally contributed to the duration.
  18. Rjtennis

    Rjtennis Hall of Fame

    Aug 16, 2009
    Besides his 2nd serve, his court positioning is poor. He is way behind the baseline against Novak.
  19. NamRanger

    NamRanger G.O.A.T.

    Oct 19, 2005

    Roddick said the same thing when he lost to Federer and looked what happened.

    I think Nadal is simply just in denial. Djokovic plain out owns him now. Djokovic played awful and should have closed out in 4, but still managed to win regardless. Nadal was playing 120%, still loses. If Djokovic even remotely plays close to his best against Nadal on a HC, it gets real ugly.
  20. mcenroefan

    mcenroefan Hall of Fame

    Jul 6, 2006
    Agreed....Nadal is having a huge problem with the deep returns. He's not gifted with the half volley so he needs to recover more quickly.

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