Rafa Roundup: Is Nadal’s 2014 starting to look a lot like Federer’s 2010?

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“That’s sport,” said Nadal, following his defeat to Nicolas Almagro. “Obviously it’s not the happiest day for me, but obviously I never thought I would win here 70 matches in a row. It was not my day today. I felt I did a lot of things well today to win the match, but at the end, [there] remained a little bit. Just accept the situation and keep fighting.”

“Cuando se pierde un partido que cree que debería ganar, no puede tener buenas sensaciones”, señaló Nadal. “¿Victorias o derrotas? Son ciclos que llegan y pasan. Yo estoy muy satisfecho con lo que he hecho: ganar ocho veces en Roland Garros, Montecarlo y Barcelona y siete en Roma no es fácil. Lo importante es estar preparado para seguir peleando. Lo que importa es jugar bien en Madrid y en Roma. Y ya veremos cómo llego a Roland Garros”.

What I immediately thought today was how much Nadal’s 2014 is beginning to resemble Roger Federer’s 2010. That year Federer, who was 28 and had finished the previous season at No. 1, lost for the first (and for the most part only) times in his career to Marcos Baghdatis, Ernests Gulbis, Albert Montanes, Robin Soderling, and Gael Monfils; he also lost twice to Tomas Berdych, who hadn’t beaten him in six years. So far in 2014, Nadal, who will be 28 in June and was No. 1 last season, has lost for the first time to Stan Wawrinka, Alexandr Dolgopolov, and Nicolas Almagro, and for the first time in 10 years on clay to David Ferrer.

Short-shorts, capris, T-shirts and sleeveless — Nadal has worn it all during his 13-year career. Here’s a look at the Spaniard’s on-court outfits through the years…

His lead over Djokovic is fewer than 2,000 points, and Nadal has 4,000 points to defend in his next three tournaments. Djokovic has just 910 points to defend during that span. Last Friday, it looked as if Djokovic’s hot form was the biggest threat to Nadal’s top spot in the rankings.

Photo via Nike
Photo via Nike

On the bright side, Nadal isn’t losing to slouches. Almagro is a clay-court specialist ranked No. 20 in the world. Ferrer is the world No. 5 and played in last year’s French Open final. Plus, no one expects Nadal to stay on top forever either.

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ICYMI: #TBT: Rafael Nadal – Brilliant in Barcelona

Rest in peace, Tito Vilanova!

Rafa Nadal Facebook
Rafa Nadal Facebook

8 comments

  1. When will some of these ignorant people realize Rafa is not a machine. He plays every single point as vehemently as any player ever has which is all anyone can ask. Of course we would love to see him win every time, and it breaks my heart when he doesn’t, but that’s not real life, he is human. I am grateful for every match of his I get to see, win or lose. He is one of the greatest players of all time, inspires my game everyday, and has so many more wins in store for him. Good luck Rafa!

  2. Lost a couple of games, that is the way of the spot. No big deal, it’s a fall, just pick yourself up dust yourself off and go back at it as you have done before. Stay with what got you there. Good mental attitude and that passion. Tony has done well by you, but even he may need some fresh ideas. You have got the game we all admire and rrespect. Goooo Rafa.

  3. I would sign up for Nadal’s 2014 to be like the weak era king’s 2010: that would mean he would win a major at least. Rafa in current (mental) state looks ready to quit playing tennis. He needs to man up!

  4. Federer won 12 majors from 2003-2007. Since then, he’s won 5 majors – 2008 US Open, 2009 French Open & Wimbledon, 2010 Australian Open, 2012 Wimbledon. Only 2 major titles in the last 4 years for “The GOAT”(a silly, nonsensical, totally SUBJECTIVE term if there ever was one).

    Rafa can do better than that. Way better. He can regain his championship form and win 4-7 more majors, but only if he 100% COMMITS to playing more aggressive, less topspin, more drive, more depth, first strike tennis.

    To one degree or another, he’s done it before, so I’m confident that he can do it again. Perhaps even more so, with the proper coaching changes, and commitment from Rafa.

    The current coaching arrangement has grown stale. A strong injection of fresh blood – a legend of the game like Martina Navratilova, Jimmy Connors or Mats Wilander that Rafa will respect, listen to, and follow – would be just what the doctor ordered.

    VAMOS!!!

  5. Rafael, de fondo siento la canción: “te volio bene”, y es ello lo que me ocurre con un deportista de tu talla. Además el monitor de mi esposa, piensa ver cómo compites en Madrid, De que en Canarias tenemos el mejor y alto concepto tuyo ganes o pierdas, ni lo dudes por un sólo momento, Estamos y seguimos por siempre con Rafa, aquí decimos: ¡¡Él más mejor!!. Con mucho afecto ahora y siempre. C. Javier

  6. Just keep going Rafa, you will come back to the super Champion you are. You can’t be expected to win all the time, everyone has a bad day.

  7. Stay calm and keep going!!!! Acknowledge the situation. Roger had a bad 2010 and came back and that didn’t diminish the champion he is. With Rafa is the same. Back his confidence, he will be back again. This is not diminishing the super champion he is!!!
    Vamooooos Rafaaa!!! arriba que sos y siempre seras un GRANDE!!!!!!

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