Indian Wells – final

(5)Rafael Nadal d. (7)Juan Martin del Potro    4-6, 6-3, 6-4    [2:29 h]

nadal_serve_iw13It was a perfect ending of the Rafa’s comeback-period that stretched between Vina del Mar and Indian Wells. The Spaniard capturing his third Indian Wells crown (2007, 2009) won his 600th main-level match and 22nd Masters 1000 title (53 overall), thanks to that he edges Roger Federer in this prestigious stats again # Del Potro started slowly as he wanted to check how his body would react after two demanding matches in the past two days. Perhaps he realized everything was OK when he was *0:3 (15/40) down – he sped up then, saved the double break point and the level of his game in the next 40 minutes or so was awesome. He was hitting his forehand all over the place with impressive velocity and accuracy, returning all Nadal’s serves. The overwhelmed Spaniard lost his timing and looked a bit hopeless. But he has made so many comebacks in his career that he never gives up, and he once again withstood the assault of his opponent. He got his service game for 1:2 in the 2nd set obtaining his first point directly after the serve in seven service games! From 1:3 he considerably improved his backhand and notched a 5-game winning streak. The 6th game of that set was crucial – Del Potro won two fantastic points displaying gentle touch at the net, but was broken to ’30’ after all. At the beginning of the 3rd set he looked weary, but a bunch of thundering forehands helped him to save three break points. Nadal was entrenched, and another three games went to him. The Argentine saved a triple match point in the 9th game, but hadn’t left in the tank to fight for a break in the following game – Nadal forced him to an error on fourth match point and celebrated his 14th match won in a row falling on his back. Now he withdraws from Miami because he needs a few weeks of rest to prove he nadal_triumhs_iw13is the King of Clay for the… ninth year running. His European schedule on clay-courts is standard this year: Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Madrid, Rome, Roland Garros. In this type of form I don’t expect he loses more than one match during the European clay-court swing. “I think Rafa deserved to win,” said Del Potro. “The last hour of the match, he played so solid and put me so far [from] the baseline and made winners. But I think I [had] a good tournament anyway, and Rafa played really well today in the second and third sets. He broke me early in the third. Playing against him when the score is down is tougher. I was fighting all the time but he won in the end.” Nadal said about his sabbatical: “A lot of things happened the last seven months, [so] to be back here and to have this very heavy trophy with me is amazing. Beating three Top 10 players and winning a title like this is just something unbelievable for me. I’m very, very happy and very emotional.”

Doubles final:
(1)B.Bryan/M.Bryan d. T.Huey/J.Janowicz 6-3, 3-6, [10-6] *

Match stats (total points: 95-82):
Nadal: 8 service, 4 aces, 25 FH, 3 BH, 2 volleys, 2 overheads
Del Potro: 11 service, 5 aces, 21 FH, 1 BH, 3 volleys, 2 overheads
Nadal: 1 double fault, 21 FH, 13 BH, 1 volley, 1 overhead
Del Potro: 4 double faults, 25 FH, 21 BH, 3 volleys
Break point conversion & Challenges:
Nadal: 4/18 (eight games), 0/1
Del Potro: 3/3 (three games), 0/5
# Most Masters 1000 titles (inc. Mercedes Super 9 & Masters Series):
22 – Rafael Nadal (2005-2013)
21 – Roger Federer (2002-2012)
17 – Andre Agassi (1990-2004)
13 – Novak Djokovic (2007-2012)
11 – Pete Sampras (1991-2001)
* The Bryans just like Nadal have collected 22 Masters ‘1000’ shields. The twins have won 9 different titles (they hadn’t won at Indian Wells prior to 2013, two finals before), Nadal hasn’t still won Cincinnati & Paris-Bercy.
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