cincinnati01kuerten_rafter

cincinnati01kuerten_rafter

Points won by each set: [ 29-17, 29-24 ]
Points won directly behind the serve:
42 % Kuerten – 21 of 49
32 % Rafter – 16 of 50

One of the shortest Masters 1K finals which lasted just an hour. The Kuerten [1] vs Rafter [7] match up seemed very attractive on paper, but unfortunately they never co-created very intriguing encounter in eight attempts. Nothing indicated that their Cincy final could be sadly one-sided. Rafter dropped his serve just twice en route to the final, won the opening game, then he was broken thrice to lose seven straight games! The deciding break of the 2nd set came at 3:2 for the Brazilian. “I had no answers for anything today, he never allowed me into the match,” said the Australian. “He hit me with everything and I couldn’t respond. I’m disappointed.” Kuerten was unquestionably the best player in the world in for almost two years – between Miami ’00 and US Open ’01 – and the title in Ohio meant the last big one in his career, at the age of 25. One week later they face each other in the final again (Indianapolis) and Kuerten retires after six games suffering a muscle strain on his ribs; Rafter finally claims a title having lost three finals in his three consecutive events (Wimbledon, Montreal, Cincinnai).

Kuerten’s route to his 16th title:
1 Andy Roddick 7-6(3), 6-1
2 Tommy Haas 7-6(4), 7-6(8)
3 Goran Ivanisevic 6-2, 6-1
Q Yevgeny Kafelnikov 6-4, 3-6, 6-4
S Tim Henman 6-2, 1-6, 7-6(4) – 4 m.p.
W Patrick Rafter 6-1, 6-3

Amazing route to the title in retrospect – potentially only Top 4 guys! At the time the ranking of the beaten players: 27-16-19-6-8-7.

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