Date: March 17th, 2013
Start time: 2 pm local time, 5 pm EDT, 9 pm GMT, 10 pm CET.
World No. 5 Rafael Nadal brings a 7-3 career head-to-head against No. 7 Juan Martin del Potro. They have split their previous six meetings on hard courts. Nadal won the last meeting in four sets on Dec. 4, 2011, in the Davis Cup final in Seville to give Spain a 3-1 victory over Argentina. This is also their third encounter in Indian Wells (2009, ’11) with Rafa winning both previous matches in straight sets. This is the eighth time in tournament history that former Grand Slam winners have met in the final.
Rafa is looking to win his 53rd career singles title, his 22nd ATP Masters 1000, and 600th career match. He has 234 career ATP Masters 1000 match wins, second only to Federer (272). Rafa is off to a career-best 16-1 start, winning 13 matches in a row. His previous best start was 15-2 in 2009. He is playing in his first hard court final since losing to Djokovic in the final at the ‘12 Aust. Open. He has lost his last six hard court finals. His last title on hard courts came on Oct. 10, 2010 in Tokyo (d. Monfils). His last hard court ATP Masters 1000 final was at ‘11 Cincinnati (l. to Djokovic). The 26-year-old also has a 12-match winning streak vs. Top 10 opponents going back to last year. His last Top 10 loss came to Federer here in the SFs. Nadal will move to No. 4 by winning the title.
Nadal Appearing in his 75th career ATP World Tour level final…….52-22 in finals (2-1 in 2013)
Appearing in his 32nd career ATP Masters 1000 final……….21-10 in finals
- The 26-year-old Mallorcan native is appearing in his fourth final here (2-1 mark) and overall has a 39-6 match record. Has dropped only one set in five matches en route to the final. Opened with a 76 62 win over Ryan Harrison, received a walkover vs. Leonardo Mayer (back), beat qualifier Ernests Gulbis 46 64 75 ,defeated rival No. 2 Federer 64 62 in QFs and No. 7 Tomas Berdych 64 75 in the SFs
- Has won 41 of 46 service games (89%), saving 10 of 15 break pts. (67%). Has won 13 of 46 return games (28%)
- A year ago, lost to Federer 63 64 in semi-finals. Two years ago lost to Djokovic in final 46 63 62
- Last year won doubles title for second time in three years (w/Lopez), defeating Isner-Querrey
- In 2009, defeated Andy Murray in the final and in ’07, he beat Djokovic in the title match. His other semi-final showings came in 2006 (l. to Blake) and in ’08 (l. to Djokovic)
- W(2): Sao Paulo (d Nalbandian); Acapulco (d Ferrer); F: Vina del Mar (l Zeballos)
2013 in Review:
- The Spaniard is off to a career-best 16-1 start on the season, winning 13 matches in a row. His previous best start was 15-2 in ’09. This is the first time he’s won two titles coming into IW since 2005.
- Trying to win 600th career match and will move to No. 4 in Emirates ATP Rankings with title
- In his last tournament on March 2 won his 38th clay-court title and second in Acapulco over No. 4 Ferrer 60 62. Finished the Latin American clay court swing with a 12-1 record and improved to 52-22 in career finals (38-5 on clay)
- Coming in here, it was 346 days since the Spaniard played his last hard court match at the Sony Open in Miami on March 28, 2012, defeating Tsonga 62 57 64 in a 2:50 battle. Withdrew from his SF match on March 30 with Murray due to tendinitis in his left knee
- Contesting in his 75th career ATP World Tour final, 52-22 (12-15 on hard) in finals (2-1 in 2013)
- Appearing in his 32nd career ATP Masters 1000 final, 21-10 (5-6 on hard) in finals. Has 234 career ATP Masters 1000 match wins and Federer is only player with more wins (272)
- Playing in first hard court final since losing to Djokovic in the final at the Australian Open last year. Has lost last six hard court finals since title in Tokyo on Oct. 10, 2010 (d. Monfils). His last hard court ATP Masters 1000 final was in Cincinnati in August 2011 (l. to Djokovic)
- Playing in his fourth final of the year (2-1) and last year reached five ATP World Tour finals (4-1 in finals, 4-0 on clay)
- On his return from left knee injury, after a seven-month absence, the Spaniard reached the Vina del Mar final, lost to Zeballos in three sets, final lasted 2 hrs, 47 mins; broke a 15-match clay winning streak (dating back to May 2012, l. to Verdasco at ATP Masters 1000 Madrid). In doubles (w/Monaco) reached final (l. to Lorenzi-Starace)
- At Sao Paulo captured title (d. Nalbandian), it was his first title since winning at Roland Garros (d. Djokovic) last year
- Has a career record of 102-51 (3-0 in 2013) vs Top 10 opponents. Has won 12 straight matches since last loss to No. 3 Federer here in SF last year. Also career 55-31 (2-0 in 2013) vs Top 5 opponents
ACTIVE MATCH WINS LEADERS – Nadal is one win away from his 600th ATP World Tour level match win. He is one of five active players with 500 or more match wins.
MILESTONE MATCH WINS – Here is a look at Rafa’s milestone match wins in his career:
- No. 1 – 2002 Mallorca 1R d. Ramon Delgado
- No. 100 – 2005 Stuttgart 2R d. Hugo Armando
- No. 200 – 2007 ATP Masters 1000 Miami 4R d. Juan Martin del Porto
- No. 300 – 2008 London / Queen’s Club QF d. Ivo Karlovic
- No. 400 – 2009 Davis Cup Final 1st match d. Tomas Berdych
- No. 500 – 2011 Barcelona SF d. Ivan Dodig
- No. 600 ??? – 2013 Indian Wells Final vs. del Potro