Cincinnati – QF

In six previous meetings against Rafael Nadal [2], Mardy Fish [7] had won just two sets. Nevertheless, this time Nadal wasn’t an overwhelming favorite due to problems with right-hand fingers and tiredness after a marathon with Verdasco a day before. Fish knew it as he said on Thursday: “If you want to play someone like Rafa, you hope that he plays a match that’s four hours long before you play him. I mean, that’s as physical as it gets. It’s hot out there, so I’m sure he’ll be pretty tired.” And indeed, Nadal was tired #, Fish was playing intelligently (a lot of balls on Nadal’s backhand – worse than usually in regard of swollen fingers), serving well (12 aces) and recorded his first win over former No. 1 in 1 hour 39 minutes. There was a moment in the 2nd set when Nadal had his chance to break back but made a forehand error on Fish’s second serve at 3:4 (40-30). Fish – unbroken so far in the tournament – now meets Andy Murray [4], who notched third straight sets victory, he needed four minutes less than Fish to knock out Gilles Simon [12] 6-3, 6-3.
Tomas Berdych [9] in impressive style (didn’t face a break point) ousted the two-time defending champion Roger Federer 6-2, 7-6 ## – it is Berdych’s third win over the Swiss [3] in the last four meetings. The Czech broke a streak of five consecutive defeats in ‘Masters 1000’ quarter-finals. Berdych said: “I was really working on [my serve] after Wimbledon. When I had few weeks off, I was really practising hard, and especially this was the one main thing that I was really like trying to work on more than the other things.”
Gael Monfils [8] drew conclusions of the last three devastating defeats to Novak Djokovic [1] in the last twelve months. The Frenchman in my opinion played one of the best and most mature matches in his career, his second serve was faster than ever, was attacking the net often with many successful volleys and didn’t allow Djokovic to shift himself to a deep defense, playing straightforward ground-strokes. It was a hight quality tennis, especially in the 2nd set; Monfils after breaking the Serb twice in the 1st set, came back from a break down in the 2nd after very long game and led 4:3 being two games away from famous victory. Unfortunately for him, couldn’t stand the cosmic pace (at the beginning of the 3rd set looked like a man before fainting…) and the rock-solid D’Joke as usual was able to lie low the assault of an opponent to get five games in a row, which established a safe 2:0 advantage in the deciding set. The Serb prevailed 3-6, 6-4, 6-3 in 2 hours 33 minutes creating a new record of the most consecutive victories in ‘Masters 1000’ tournaments – 30. His another big triumph might be an extremely tough task because all other three players left in the event, won first three rounds easily, albeit Fish like Djokovic has played eight matches in the last two weeks, so physical tiredness may catch him as well…

# Nadal’s four longest 3-set wins and their aftermath the following day:
Rome, 2007: N.Davydenko 7-6, 6-7, 6-4 (3 hours, 39 minutes) -> F.Gonzalez 6-2, 6-2
Chennai, 2008: C.Moya 6-7, 7-6, 7-6 (3 hours, 54 minutes) -> M.Youzhny 0-6, 1-6
Madrid, 2009: N.Djokovic 3-6, 7-6, 7-6 (4 hours, 11 minutes) -> R.Federer 4-6, 4-6
Cincinnati, 2011: F.Verdasco 7-6, 6-7, 7-6 (3 hours, 38 minutes) -> M.Fish 3-6, 4-6
## Four longest winning streaks in Cincinnati:
17 – Mats Wilander (1983-85)
14 – Michael Chang (1993-95)
11 – Roger Federer (2009-11)
10 – Andre Agassi (1995-96)
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3 Responses to Cincinnati – QF

  1. David says:

    H2H Nadal vs Verdasco is 12-0; H2H Lendl vs Gilbert was 16-0; Do you know what’s the record?

  2. Voo de Mar says:

    According to ATP:

    I.Lendl vs. T.Mayotte 17-0 (1980-90)
    I.Lendl vs. S.Davis 17-0 (1980-91)
    B.Borg vs. V.Gerulaitis 16-0 (1974-81)

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