rg03verkerk_coria

rg03verkerk_coria

Points won by each set: [ 42-43, 33-25, 45-39 ]
Points won directly behind the serve:
30 % Verkerk – 33 of 108
13 % Coria – 16 of 119

Prior to that semifinal Coria [7] had already established himself as one of the best clay-court players, but Verkerk’s victory is more valuable in retrospect, because after that loss Coria was unbeaten in 31 consecutive matches on clay! The match could have gone either way: the 21-year-old Argentinian led 6:5* (deuce) in the 1st set as Verkerk played very well at the net, in each of the two following sets “El Mago” led with a break of serve. Actually the best chance to get a set Coria had in the mid-set as he squandered a double mini-set point at 4-all, it was his best chance because on both occasions Verkerk missed his powerful 1st serves, and there were baseline rallies dictated by Coria – he made two casual errors though. After 2 hours 40 minutes, the favorite committed a double fault on first match point and the 25-year-old Dutchman [46] with tears in the eyes celebrated the biggest success of his career, something absolutely unimaginable as the tournament started (Verkerk had not won a Grand Slam match before French Open 2003!)… Coria was very close of being disqualified when he threw his racquet losing the last point of the opener, almost hitting the head of a ball-kid. He quickly apologized everybody, and gave his T-shirt to the potential victim of his silliness. He got only a warning after supervisor’s consultation with the chair-umpire. I think that situation didn’t affect him too much cause he opened the next set leading 2:0.

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