Rome – final

(5)Rafael Nadal d. (2)Roger Federer    6-1, 6-3    [1:09 h]

nadal_rom13triumphWhen two best players of the XXI Century meet, expectations are always enormous. They had played on Centre Court in Rome one of the most memorable finals of the Open era (2006), so spectators gathered at Foro Italico counted on similarly equal match, in vain… 30th meeting between Nadal & Djokovic was epic (Australian Open ’12), unfortunately 30th match between Nadal & Federer was miserable. 1st game didn’t indicate it would be one of Federer’s worst defeats in career. The Swiss opened the final with an ace, played two nice volleys and a forehand winner. Afterwards Nadal produced a 9-game winning streak though, dominating the court entirely. He was returning Federer’s serves with ease, his forehand just like a day before was admirable. Federer couldn’t find any solution, and what’s worse he didn’t even try, he looked rather indifferent. He had a break point in the 1st game of the 2nd set, but Nadal fought it off with a service winner. During a changeover at 3:0 in the 2nd set whistles flight around the stadium, they didn’t motivate Federer to bigger effort. Nadal was serving at 5:1 to make the most devastating loss in Federer’s career (the Swiss lost 1-6 1-6 in Barcelona ’00 to Sergi Bruguera), bnadal_federer_rome13ut two best backhands of the final helped Federer to break at ‘love’. Nadal was more focus on his second service chance and quick hold to ‘love’ gave him 56th title (7th at Italian Open). The Spaniard seems to play better tennis than ever after the 7-month sabbatical, and very likely he’s going to regain the status of the best player in the world this year. In 2013 he’s played eight tournaments, reaching finals every time (!) – it’s his best half of the season since turned pro ten years ago. It’s tough to imagine someone would beat him in Paris, taking into account rather poor appearances of Djokovic and Murray in Madrid and Rome. Federer goes to Paris for the first time not having won a title in the first five months of the season since he captured his first one in 2001. “If you told me four or five months ago that after eight tournaments I would have won six titles from eight finals, I would say you are crazy,” said Nadal, “To win three Masters 1000 and two ‘500’ tournaments is more than I ever dreamed.” 

Doubles final:
(1)B.Bryan/M.Bryan d. (6)M.Bhupathi/R. Bopanna 6-2, 6-3

Match stats (total points: 59-36):
Nadal: 12 service, 1 aces, 2 FH, 7 BH, 1 dropshot
Federer: 5 service, 3 aces, 3 FH, 2 BH, 6 volleys, 2 overheads, 1 dropshot
Nadal: 1 double fault, 7 FH, 7 BH
Federer: 0 double faults, 15 FH, 16 BH, 4 volleys
Break point conversion:
Nadal: 5/6 (5 games)
Federer: 1/2 (2 games)
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