Will Rafa recover mentally from the defeat in Melbourne?

#51
and yet he fears the joker too much.
What would be the indicator that he fears too much? What would be the reason not to consider Nadal the most competent person in the world for the most accurate estimation how much fear/worry is appropriate?

Nadal is not a coward, but he did not achieve what he did because he is not smart enough. Therefore, based on his first hand knowledge and experience on the matter, the only logical explanation is that he knows what casual observer and many 'experts' don't, obviously. He has to play these matches against Djokovic while world is watching and his face simply reflected he knew what he was up against, and the most likely outcome.

We don't have to face Djokovic. We simply expect/request - glorious entertainment, an 'epic one', as if we are entitled to have it. Hence, this casual, carefree 'too much'.

Surely, RG19 will be more fun.
 

Zhilady

Professional
#52
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.
I would normally dismiss armchair analyses like this, but Nadal's body language in the Australian Open final wasn't good at all. It looked like he came in expecting a beatdown, and getting a worse beatdown than even you were expecting is never good for your confidence. I'm curious to see how Djokovic and Nadal would match up at the French Open now.
 
#54
DJoker has had Rafa's number for years, he was one netcord touch violation away from beating prime Nadal at the French.
That's like saying that Nadal was two games away from beating prime Djokovic at the AO.

Nadal leads Djokovic 6-1 at RG. Djokovic doesn't have Nadal's number at RG.
 
#62
rg 2019 is the last edition when all the matches they will be played outdoors.
since the 2020 edition, if the rain comes or goes dark, there will be a retractable roof where indoor matches will be played.
It is a detail to take into account.
The roof will be most likely operational in 2021.

"The cavalry is on the way, however, set to bring a new retractable roof planned for the center court by 2020 — though it might not be fully operational until 2021."
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/06/sports/tennis/french-open-roof.html
 
#63
If Nadal's game deteriorates on clay, if his stats fall this year, then advantage Djokovic. We'll know before RG how things appear. Up to then guessing is pointless. Key is health, not getting injured. Injuries to either player will flip odds. If both are healthy, I have to go with Nadal on clay, again.
 
#65
What was your argument? That because Djokovic was close to defeat Nadal at RG 2013, he will win this RG edition? Following that logic, because Nadal was close to win AO 2012, he should have won AO 2019.
Nadal has no shot a Roland Garros in his AO form; but he has time to get into shape. My point was, had Djokoker not had the net cord violation; beating Nadal in his prime on Philippe Chatrier, or whichever court that match was played on, is miles ahead of any performance Nadal has had over Djokovic. It would further legitimize Djoker as a potential GOAT candidate. Their history is brutally lopsided on all court surfaces towards Novak.
 
#66
Nadal has no shot a Roland Garros in his AO form; but he has time to get into shape. My point was, had Djokoker not had the net cord violation; beating Nadal in his prime on Philippe Chatrier, or whichever court that match was played on, is miles ahead of any performance Nadal has had over Djokovic. It would further legitimize Djoker as a potential GOAT candidate. Their history is brutally lopsided on all court surfaces towards Novak.
The net shot was not even break point. Sorry but, in the same way that Djokovic was close to beat prime Nadal at Roland Garros 2013, Nadal was close to beat prime Novak at the AO 2012. So, following your logic, just because Nadal was close to beat prime Djokovic at the AO 2012, he should have won the AO 2019 edition.
 
#68
The net shot was not even break point. Sorry but, in the same way that Djokovic was close to beat prime Nadal at Roland Garros 2013, Nadal was close to beat prime Novak at the AO 2012. So, following your logic, just because Nadal was close to beat prime Djokovic at the AO 2012, he should have won the AO 2019 edition.
Beating Nadal in his prime at Roland Garros is far more impressive in my opinion given how Nadal's wins in the head to head favor clay exclusively. Nadal beating Djokovic at the ao in 2012 is neglible given Djoker's indoor, outdoor and grass record vs the Spaniard
 
#70
DJoker has had Rafa's number for years, he was one netcord touch violation away from beating prime Nadal at the French.
Agree that Novak has always presented a big time matchup problem for Nadal, but about an hour before the infamous “touch,” Nadal had him 2 sets to 1 served for the match twice... so Nadal was in control for most of that match.

Conversely, I could use the example of Aussie Open ‘12 final when Rafa choked a routine bh down the line at 4-2, 30-15 in the 5th set when Novak was totally reeling, but then again Novak served for that match up 2 sets to 1 and Rafa had no business even being in that match.
 
#73
Nadal has no shot a Roland Garros in his AO form; but he has time to get into shape. My point was, had Djokoker not had the net cord violation; beating Nadal in his prime on Philippe Chatrier, or whichever court that match was played on, is miles ahead of any performance Nadal has had over Djokovic. It would further legitimize Djoker as a potential GOAT candidate. Their history is brutally lopsided on all court surfaces towards Novak.
“Nadal has no shot at RG in his current form.”

Biased speculation and a laughable assertion

“It would further legitimize Joker as a potential GOAT candidate.”

Dude, there is no GOAT for myriad reasons, and Novak is already a legend and one of the best ever.

“Their history is brutally lopsided on all surfaces toward Novak.”

That Nadal beat Novak in the final of two of his US Opens as well as the fact that Nadal led the H2H up until a few years ago (including 9-3 in major H2H) fails to meet any criterion for “brutally lopsided” lol

Geez, tap the brakes on your Djokovic rhetoric just a tad, why don’t ya?.
 

Rosstour

Hall of Fame
#74
federer is not a problem, djokovic is.
How is Fed not a problem? Nadal didn't even win one of their matches in 2017, including a GS FInal up 3-1 in the 5th. Fed ran off 5 straight games to take that match, Rafa had no answer for it.

And after that, Fed dished out 3 straight-sets beatdowns at IW, Miami, Shanghai.

Rafa won 2 Slams that year and finished #1. Safe to say there are no excuses to be made for his performances against Fed that year, only an inescapable fact to be confronted: Nadal is no longer the superior player of the two, on hard courts at least.

I would normally dismiss armchair analyses like this, but Nadal's body language in the Australian Open final wasn't good at all. It looked like he came in expecting a beatdown, and getting a worse beatdown than even you were expecting is never good for your confidence. I'm curious to see how Djokovic and Nadal would match up at the French Open now.
Thanks, and again...look at recent history. What happened last time they met at RG? Djokovic won, 7-5, 6-3, 6-1. Obviously the first set was close but not the rest of it...did he even break Nole's serve once?

Since 2014 Nadal is 0-4 against Fed/Djok in Slams and IMO we are not seeing the truth staring us in the face. All of the current thinking on Nadal vs the other 2 is based on the player he was from 2008-2013 when he was clearly the best of the 3, and since 2014 the situation has been totally reversed...hence the look on Rafa's face as if he were heading to a funeral.
 
#76
“Nadal has no shot at RG in his current form.”

Biased speculation and a laughable assertion

“It would further legitimize Joker as a potential GOAT candidate.”

Dude, there is no GOAT for myriad reasons, and Novak is already a legend and one of the best ever.

“Their history is brutally lopsided on all surfaces toward Novak.”

That Nadal beat Novak in the final of two of his US Opens as well as the fact that Nadal led the H2H up until a few years ago (including 9-3 in major H2H) fails to meet any criterion for “brutally lopsided” lol

Geez, tap the brakes on your Djokovic rhetoric just a tad, why don’t ya?.
Biased speculation and a laughable assertion that your riposte is any more objective than my own.

How does referencing an arbitrary point in time in the h2h matchup improve your argument? It effectually manipulates the bottom line without exploring the reasons for the early lead. Perhaps Djokovic suffered from elephantitis of the testicles and had to get them reduced early on in his career or maybe it was gluten and a deviated septum that hurt him.

Bravo to Nadal in beating Djoker twice at the us open, an astounding feat, but it doesn't change the fact Djoker is dominating the head to head on a variety of surfaces whereas if you were to separate the clay court season, the h2h wouldn't be close. Of course such a hypothetical is erroneous and parochial in itself; Nadal is the greatest clay court player of all-time and despite the low Nielsen ratings of the French it cannot be discounted. It should be noted however; as it stands statistically via h2h, Djoker is the better player in aggregate given the different surfaces he excels on.
 

DSH

Hall of Fame
#81
Based on what, Wimbledon 2008? AO2009?

We are living in the past if we think Nadal can just 'flip a switch' and wipe Fed off the court.
Federer is not going to reach Semifinals even quarterfinals of a gs anymore, besides a deep run in wimbledon, therefore, he is not someone to worry about.
Djokovic is.
It is not difficult to understand.
 

TnsGuru

Professional
#82
He needs some wins against these two during the early hard court season and clay events to give them that little bit of doubt. If not, they will have the edge because Djokovic and Federer feed off their confidence and Djokovic for the time being is on top. Fed on the other hand, might not be the same force we have seen most of 2017-early 2018.

Close losses might be one thing I think Nadal is good at getting over, it's the beatdowns like as of recent times might undo him if it keeps happening. I wonder what Nadal's team is working on now to help him?
 
#83
Of course he will and he can and will beat Novak again. He just came back from injury and still played that good so he will probably get even better.
 
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