“I will do my best, but it will not be an easy task to recover,” he warned. Rafael Nadal, 34, recalling the three and a half hour wear to Denis Shapovalov.
Today Friday, not before 12.00, you have an appointment with the youngest Alexander Zverev, 24, although three hours later he concluded his particular comeback on Thursday with Kei nishikori, lifting 1-3 and 1-4 in the second and third sets. He had to work for three hours.
Nadal was more at the limit against Shapovalov, since he saved two match points that later allowed him to finish in his favor in the ‘tiebreak’ for 3-6, 6-4 and 7-6 (3), although Zverev also did it. It happened badly since at times not only did the Japanese despair, but also the double faults, accumulating 8.
A week later, Nadal and Zverev met in the quarterfinals of an ATP Masters 1000. The Teuton was superior (6-4 and 6-4) in Madrid, where Rafa turned off after having 4-2 and serve first and 4-3 and break ball for 5-3 next. Suddenly Sascha took control, getting his first victory on land, the third in a row in a record that continues to dominate the Balearic Islands 5-3. His latest success, in the final of Rome 2018 by 6-1, 1-6 and 6-3.
“Things can go awful, but if you tell me if I prefer to play against him here or in Madrid, here or in Barcelona or at Roland Garros or in Monte Carlo, Madrid is the worst possible situation against a player like Zverev. There is less control in the game, ”Nadal analyzed in reference to the altitude factor.
He does consider that the central court of the Foro Italico “is not the largest in the world, it goes well for players with a serve like Zverev’s.” The stands are very close to the playing field, nothing to do for example with his beloved Philippe Chatrier, the immense center-back of Roland Garros.
Paris is the next appointment from May 30. One week later than expected due to the pandemic. “I will have options to arrive well prepared to Roland Garros regardless of what happens in Rome. I have a good load of games, with long games, fighting, some good and some bad, but living all kinds of situations. And that’s what it’s all about. We’ll see what happens in Paris, but now I’m in the Rome quarters and I live from my day to day, ”says Nadal.
The best of Nadal-Zverev will meet an unexpected opponent in the semifinals, be it the Argentine Federico Delbonis, left-handed from the previous phase, or the American ‘gunner’ Reilly opelka.
Up in the box, explosive crash Novak Djokovic-Stefanos Tsitsipas, with a semifinal for the winner against the Italian Lorenzo Sonego, which left out Dominic Thiem, or the Russian Andrey Rublev.