Will Rafa recover mentally from the defeat in Melbourne?

#3
Rafa is now in a unique situation. He is finding it impossible to beat Novak AND Roger. He has never been here before and you can tell he is not handling it well mentally.
Agreed that he's definitely in a tough situation right now mentally, but he's such a warrior and I would love to see a Djokovic vs Nadal final at Roland Garros 2019! I sincerely hope he recovers so he can give everything he's got to break the slam record that my man Roger Federer currently holds. Some would say, why do you want Nadal to be healthy and give everything he's got to break the most important record in tennis? Well, because I want Roger to be able to say that he held off a fit and motivated Nadal and Djokovic from breaking his record. That would be an epic feeling for the Swiss Maestro and his fans to have! Another reason is because through the years I have learned to not only respect Nadal and Djokovic, but actually like and enjoy watching them play. Of course, I hate it when they beat Federer or win a slam and get a step closer to his record, but that's because I'm a fan of Federer and not a hater of Djokovic and Nadal. These three guys have made each other so much better and pushed the game to heights it's never seen before, and probably won't see again in my lifetime anyways. So, in short I hope Rafa can bounce back with vengeance and have a great 2019 season.
 

aman92

Hall of Fame
#4
Rafa is now in a unique situation. He is finding it impossible to beat Novak AND Roger. He has never been here before and you can tell he is not handling it well mentally.
When he loses to them on clay then we are talking.... H hasn't met Fed in nearly 2 years and lost to Djokovic in his favourite slam and Nadal's worst after a 4 month layoff. He'll recover
 
#6
Rafa is too strong not to bounce back mentally; he always does. Thar doesn't guarantee results, but he should contend for at least two of the remaining three majors this year.
 

Rosstour

Hall of Fame
#7
Some would say, why do you want Nadal to be healthy and give everything he's got to break the most important record in tennis? Well, because I want Roger to be able to say that he held off a fit and motivated Nadal and Djokovic from breaking his record. That would be an epic feeling for the Swiss Maestro and his fans to have!
I agree, though it's not going to be that simple with all of them aging. Fed and Nadal seem to be in the same spot, which is that they need to be very careful with their bodies/injuries, and they need the draw to cooperate. Djokovic is the only one who's just on autopilot right now. As weird as it sounds, Federer is still his greatest threat.

Nadal has proved over the last 5 years that he is no longer on Djokovic's level, and now it's clear he's not even on Fed's either.

His last victory over Fed was 5 years ago, how do you think that weighs on him? Especially with every commentator still thinking he owns Fed?

Nadal's longest unbeaten streak against Fed was Monte Carlo 08 through WTF '10. That is the basis for our current thinking on Nadal's mastery of Federer, and it is so wrong.

When he loses to them on clay then we are talking.... H hasn't met Fed in nearly 2 years and lost to Djokovic in his favourite slam and Nadal's worst after a 4 month layoff. He'll recover
I don't think you have to worry too much about Rafa mentally. He's come back from tough losses before. I would be more worried about his body holding up.
Rafa is too strong not to bounce back mentally; he always does. Thar doesn't guarantee results, but he should contend for at least two of the remaining three majors this year.
Think about it though. Rafa smashed everyone on the way to that Final and looked unstoppable. He didn't have the look of someone who wasn't in game shape yet. His new serve was clicking, his volleys looked amazing...and then all of a sudden he looked like crap.

The math for Rafa isn't good here. Think of it from his POV...

Since AO14 he is 0-5 against Roger, and hasn't even taken a set since AO17.

Since AO14 he is 3-11 against Djokovic, with all of his wins coming on clay.

What kind of a picture does that draw for him and his camp? What does that tell us?

Answer: Rafa cannot beat Djokovic OR Fed off of clay...and in Nole's case, maybe not even on clay. Last time they met at RG, it was a straight-set beatdown with a breadstick in the 3rd for good measure.

You think there is some doubt creeping in there, after compiling a 4-16 record against them since 2013 ended?

Anyone who thinks these sobering stats don't scare him "because he's a warrior" is simply kidding him/herself. Rafa knows that if he meets either of those two on hard courts, he will be exposed badly, and that even on clay he is not safe from Novak. Not a good position for a guy who thrives on the aura of invincibility.
 
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#9
Rerun the very beginning of the match and watch Nadal's face as they come out of the corridor and enter the court. I do not recal seeing anything close to that expression on Nadal's face on court ever PRIOR to a single point played.

it is Djokovic he should recover from mentally, not the defeat. It is not a 24 year old youth trying to outnadal Nadal in a 'if you are a man enough' style, like he did in his first run in 2011. It is further improved Djokovic from Doha 2016 finals against Nadal. Find Nadal's stats in that match, and listen what Nadal said at the presser about Djokovic's play in that finals.

Now, imagine AO19 scenario at RG19. It starts and Djokovic struggles a bit, losing a set once or twice, while Nadal kills them all he plays like flies. Then comes SF. Rafa wins in straight sets and Djokovic wins it in straight sets, but the match lasts 1:23 and with Djokovic making 5 UE, or it lasts 2:03 and with 9 UE, since it is clay, with Djokovic preventing an opponent from 'taking a breath' on court. Then comes the finals, and Djokovic starts doing the same thing to Nadal, but this time in Nadal's front yard.

Surely, there are many things that can happen in the meantime, like Nadal getting his fitness and confidence up, and Djokovic losing some mastrers' final(s) against 'stunning Sashas'. Let's see their (clay) masters performances first and where/if they play finals against each other before RG19.
 

Rosstour

Hall of Fame
#10
Rerun the very beginning of the match and watch Nadal's face as they come out of the corridor and enter the court. I do not recal seeing anything close to that expression on Nadal's face on court ever PRIOR to a single point played.

it is Djokovic he should recover from mentally, not the defeat. It is not a 24 year old youth trying to outnadal Nadal in a 'if you are a man enough' style, like he did in his first run in 2011. It is further improved Djokovic from Doha 2016 finals against Nadal. Find Nadal's stats in that match, and listen what Nadal said at the presser about Djokovic's play in that finals.

Now, imagine AO19 scenario at RG19. It starts and Djokovic struggles a bit, losing a set once or twice, while Nadal kills them all he plays like flies. Then comes SF. Rafa wins in straight sets and Djokovic wins it in straight sets, but the match lasts 1:23 and with Djokovic making 5 UE, or it lasts 2:03 and with 9 UE, since it is clay, with Djokovic preventing an opponent from 'taking a breath' on court. Then comes the finals, and Djokovic starts doing the same thing to Nadal, but this time in Nadal's front yard.
I agree with this. And if we're thinking about it, you know Rafa and his camp have thought about it.

Djokovic smoked him at RG15, do we really think Rafa has somehow closed that gap after losing to him at Wimbledon and Aussie?

A French Open crown this year is no sure thing for Nadal and he must know it. His best-case scenario is a shock loss for Djok in the early rounds, which will take a lot of pressure off Rafa and allow him to play freely instead of tightening up in anticipation of meeting Novak in the SF/F.
 
#11
The fact that he's so good on clay is always in the back of his mind no matter how many times he loses to them. Rafa knows he always has that to depend on. He'll protect that part of the season at all costs and give everything humanly possible while doing so. Nadal is the man to beat there always. No better confidence booster in the business of you ask me.
 
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#12
Rosstour’s post is compelling to be sure. Having said that, these demons that Rafa faces applies more off clay and also much more to Novak. IOW, at Fed’s stage and age, his recovery time will be so much longer on B of 5 that beating Rafa, against whom I’ll be the first to admit he seems to have totally solved the H2H issue, won’t be easy, esp. if Fed braves the clay of Roland Garros and somehow. faces Rafa there.

Novak surely has a big edge off clay and more chances on the clay. Ironically, the Serb is more vulnerable to others on clay even before he makes it to Rafa.... I’d love to see a Novak Rafa final!

Should be fun.
 
#15
Rafa is now in a unique situation. He is finding it impossible to beat Novak AND Roger. He has never been here before and you can tell he is not handling it well mentally.
LOL citing Federer when he has only consistently stopped Nadal one year in his career (2017).
2014: lost in straight sets against Nadal at the AO.
2015: only played one match on indoor hard courts.
2016: didn't play.
2017: beat Nadal four times on HC.
2018: didn't face Nadal.
2019: hasn't faced Nadal.

Who stopped Nadal at Wimbledon 2018? Who stopped Nadal at the Australian Open 2019? Djokovic, not Federer. Djokovic is Nadal's problem, not Federer. Federer hasn't reached a Grand Slam semifinal since the Australian Open 2018, more than one year ago.
 

Tennis_Hands

Talk Tennis Guru
#17
LOL citing Federer when he has only consistently stopped Nadal one year in his career (2017).
2014: lost in straight sets against Nadal at the AO.
2015: only played one match on indoor hard courts.

2016: didn't play.
2017: beat Nadal four times on HC.
2018: didn't face Nadal.
2019: hasn't faced Nadal.

Who stopped Nadal at Wimbledon 2018? Who stopped Nadal at the Australian Open 2019? Djokovic, not Federer. Djokovic is Nadal's problem, not Federer. Federer hasn't reached a Grand Slam semifinal since the Australian Open 2018, more than one year ago.
2014: played only one match against Federer
2015: lost
2016: didn't face Federer
2017: beat Nadal four times on HC
2018: didn't face Federer
2019: hasn't faced Federer

:cool:
 
#19
Yes, he will.
Rafa made a final at his worst major, played good tennis and only lost to a superb playing AO-loving Djoker.

I expect proper results at least during clay season and his best game at FO.
 
#22
When he loses to them on clay then we are talking.... H hasn't met Fed in nearly 2 years and lost to Djokovic in his favourite slam and Nadal's worst after a 4 month layoff. He'll recover
Absolutely he will recover, he is probably the best ever mentally strong player tennis has ever produced
 
#23
Once Nadal steps foot on clay his full powers are restored and he becomes a different player. Trust and believe he is not pressed if your name is not Djokovic and even then if it's a RG final, Rafa is still the man to beat and has never lost at that juncture. He will be fine once he gets on clay but Djokovic looks too strong for him on hardcourt these days. Rafa always bounces back though and will be fine.
 
#27
Wow people actually making out the RG 2015 has any baring on Nadals clay form LOL
The guy was playing his worst ever season on the tour, even on clay, yes.
Of course the current best player in the world was going to smoke him, when plenty of mugs were also beating him on clay.

I honestly think some people just goggle H2H results and come up with ' Oh Djokovic easily beat Nadal in his back yard 4 years ago, so he has his number ' :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:
 
#30
Once Nadal steps foot on clay his full powers are restored and he becomes a different player. Trust and believe he is not pressed if your name is not Djokovic and even then if it's a RG final, Rafa is still the man to beat and has never lost at that juncture. He will be fine once he gets on clay but Djokovic looks too strong for him on hardcourt these days. Rafa always bounces back though and will be fine.
Think of it this way. If Nadal has a gruelling battle against Djokovic and Federer as per his usual self takes advantage from the weak era again, it'll sting the Nadal (we're talking Master level here, not sure if that's possible given the rankings though but rankings can change).

At RG, Nadal is definitely the man to beat. But, if the ranking would allow it, and Nadal has to get past both super Djokovic and weak era benefitting Federer and/or Thiem, it'll be interesting.

Imagine the Nadal in 2011 having to go through Djokovic and Federer. Not sure if he would have won RG 2011.

Don't bring up "in 06-08 he beat Djokovic and Federer often at RG," that was baby Djokovic. Not super Djokovic.
 
#31
Wow people actually making out the RG 2015 has any baring on Nadals clay form LOL
The guy was playing his worst ever season on the tour, even on clay, yes.
Of course the current best player in the world was going to smoke him, when plenty of mugs were also beating him on clay.

I honestly think some people just goggle H2H results and come up with ' Oh Djokovic easily beat Nadal in his back yard 4 years ago, so he has his number ' :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:
Tbh, Federer fans did not do this lol. The ones doing that were mostly Djoke fans (not all Djoke fans).

The Nadal has completely ruined many careers on clay. Federer is a mere mug on clay (relatively speaking compared to hard/grass) and so is Djokovic, all due to Nadal lol. Federer would have 3 FO. Can't see him lose all 05-06-07 matches.
 
#32
Think of it this way. If Nadal has a gruelling battle against Djokovic and Federer as per his usual self takes advantage from the weak era again, it'll sting the Nadal (we're talking Master level here, not sure if that's possible given the rankings though but rankings can change).

At RG, Nadal is definitely the man to beat. But, if the ranking would allow it, and Nadal has to get past both super Djokovic and weak era benefitting Federer and/or Thiem, it'll be interesting.

Imagine the Nadal in 2011 having to go through Djokovic and Federer. Not sure if he would have won RG 2011.

Don't bring up "in 06-08 he beat Djokovic and Federer often at RG," that was baby Djokovic. Not super Djokovic.
How Nadal does in clay Masters has no bearing on how he deals with players at RG. It's an entirely different ball game.

Nadal doesn't have to worry about Djokovic until the final if it comes to that, but could play Thiem or Federer earlier.

Hard to say. Maybe if he had Djokovic in the SF he would have been in trouble but he still has never lost in a final. Until that happens, I don't think he can lose.
 

mike danny

Talk Tennis Guru
#33
LOL citing Federer when he has only consistently stopped Nadal one year in his career (2017).
2014: lost in straight sets against Nadal at the AO.
2015: only played one match on indoor hard courts.
2016: didn't play.
2017: beat Nadal four times on HC.
2018: didn't face Nadal.
2019: hasn't faced Nadal.

Who stopped Nadal at Wimbledon 2018? Who stopped Nadal at the Australian Open 2019? Djokovic, not Federer. Djokovic is Nadal's problem, not Federer. Federer hasn't reached a Grand Slam semifinal since the Australian Open 2018, more than one year ago.
2017 and 2007.

And you can't give other years to Nadal just like that.
 
#34
Nadal is getting married this year. Very stressful time in life of every man. I think this year will go down the drain for him. He's toasted and will finish drained. Novak seems stronger than ever in their h2h while Fed is still not for throwing away as long as he can protect his record he will fight like a violent cat. Also he went through marriage turmoil phase already. Don't see how Rafa could do something. Maybe he will take some clay tournament and that would be all he does this year.
 
#35
2017 and 2007.

And you can't give other years to Nadal just like that.
In 2007 he just had one more victory, 3-2. But he was destroyed by Nadal at RG in 4 sets, and almost lost to Nadal in a close 5 sets match at Wimbledon 2007 (with Nadal having 4 break points in the 5th). So even in 2007 he did not dominate Nadal.
 

vex

Hall of Fame
#36
My 2 cents are on Yes. Lately everyone has been burying Rafa because Djoker has really had his number. But I think people aren’t appreciating what an absurdly high level Djoker has brought to his Nadal matches in order to execute his Nadal strategy.
 

mike danny

Talk Tennis Guru
#39
In 2007 he just had one more victory, 3-2. But he was destroyed by Nadal at RG in 4 sets, and almost lost to Nadal in a close 5 sets match at Wimbledon 2007 (with Nadal having 4 break points in the 5th). So even in 2007 he did not dominate Nadal.
He wasn't destroyed at RG 2007.

And he doesn't need to dominate Nadal. Just get the better of him.
 

Rosstour

Hall of Fame
#42
Do you even believe the ******** things you are saying? Federer hasn't reached a Grand Slam semifinal since the AO 2018, more than one year ago. Yet, you are saying that "Nadal is not in Federer's level anymore"
I go on recent results, and Rafa's results over the past 5 years vs the other 2 are awful, by far the worst of the 3.

And yet people still think that Rafa is 2008-13 Rafa and can simply brutalize the other guys into folding when it matters, provided he is healthy.
 
#43
To be honest, a final showing at the AO was a great way to start his 2019 season. When he pulled out of Brisbane, I had my doubts he would play AO. Not only did he play but also did so well we got carried away by his form, forgetting that he had just returned from an injury and no competitive tennis for 4 months.

If he stays healthy, he could still get back to number 1 ranking in a few months.
 

aman92

Hall of Fame
#44
To be honest, a final showing at the AO was a great way to start his 2019 season. When he pulled out of Brisbane, I had my doubts he would play AO. Not only did he play but also did so well we got carried away by his form, forgetting that he had just returned from an injury and no competitive tennis for 4 months.

If he stays healthy, he could still get back to number 1 ranking in a few months.
Will be difficult as Djokovic as nothing to defend really till Wimbledon
 
#45
Maybe somebody here remembers the details. There was a Nadal interview (may have been a press conference), maybe around the time of the FO last year, where Nadal is asked if he thought Nole could return to form. And Nadal almost laughed at the question and said something along the lines that Nole was already back (this is prior to Wimbledon) and that Nole would remain a key contender. He always understood how good Nole can be (just like, I think, Nole understands the same of Nadal).
 

Steve0904

Talk Tennis Guru
#46
I don't know about his rivalry with Djokovic, but if Federer keeps going this way it won't matter one bit how many times in a row Federer has beaten Nadal. In their current forms I'm 99% sure Nadal would win, probably even on grass because if they played it would probably mean Nadal is playing well enough to beat him.

Nadal will recover if he can win RG. If he loses to Djokovic there or anyone else then we can talk.
 

DSH

Hall of Fame
#49
Do you even believe the ******** things you are saying? Federer hasn't reached a Grand Slam semifinal since the AO 2018, more than one year ago. Yet, you are saying that "Nadal is not in Federer's level anymore"

RG 2018: Nadal (W) had a better result than Federer who withdrawed.
WB 2018: Nadal (SF) had a better result than Federer (QF).
USO 2018: Nadal (SF) had a better result than Federer (QF).
AO 2019: Nadal (F) had a better results than Federer (4R).

Nadal has had better results than Federer in 4 Grand Slams in a row. So contrary to what you say, Federer is not in Nadal's level anymore. While Nadal is only stopped by one guy (Djokovic) in the final or semifinals, Federer is stopped by nobodies in early rounds.

wrong, he lost against millman in the fourth round.
 
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