The first encounter between the young, long-haired, Spanish native speakers, the future nos. 1, who at the time where fresh Top 10ers. Quite strange that Moya  didn’t create a break point chance, but he had a few games in the 2nd set when he was close to do that, leading 3:2 (30/0), 4:3 (deuce), 5:4 (30/0) and 6:5 (30/15) – in the 6th game as he led 30/15 he played a drop-shot which probably could give him a double break point against majority of players, but Rios not only chased the ball – he also got a winner with a tight passing-shot. In the tie-break Moya led 5:4*, two points later Rios thought he won the match when the linesman called Moya’s forehand long, but the umpire ordered the repeat of the point (I think correctly), and the Chilean  forced a backhand error. # Two years later they’ll play another big semifinal, concluded after the same scoreline, it’s a very similar match also in terms of chances Moya created (he led in the openers 4:3 in MC & 4:2 in Hamburg; in tie-breaks 4:2 in MC & 3:0 in Hamburg).
# Comparison of their two Masters 1K semifinals:
M. Carlo ’97: Rios d. Moya 6-4, 7-6(5)… 1 hour 34 minutes… Total points: 75-70… Breaks: 1-0
Hamburg ’99: Rios d. Moya 6-4, 7-6(4)… 1 hour 30 minutes… Total points: 79-67… Breaks: 4-3
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