The 2008 season it’s arguably the best one in Nadal’s career, but he started it with his bitterest defeat, suffered at the Chennai Open. The Spaniard lost the final in just 54 minutes, which I believe belongs to the Top 15 shortest finals in the Open Era. He held at love after losing the first seven games, but in other twelve games he didn’t get to ‘deuce’ even once! “There is nothing wrong with me – I called the trainer because I was feeling tired,” said the 21-year-old Nadal , who took medical time-out trailing *1:4 in the 2nd set. “Mikhail played unbelievable tennis and deserved to win.” “This victory is a present from Rafael,” said Youzhny , who had beaten Nadal in four of their seven encounters on hard courts. “I did not think it would be so easy. I thought he would come back strongly in the second set but once I broke him in the fourth game, I knew I only had to ensure I did not make mistakes.” Nadal was exhausted after an almost 4-hour semifinal against Carlos Moya (they’d tied the record for the longest ‘best of 3’ match). He had only 20 hours to recover after that marathon.
Youzhny’s route to his 4th title:
1 Jiri Vanek 6-3, 6-2
2 Edouard Roger-Vasselin 7-5, 1-6, 6-2
Q Xavier Malisse 6-4, 6-4
S Marin Cilic 6-2, 6-3
W Rafael Nadal 6-0, 6-1
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