Rafa Roundup: Nadal is still the King of Clay

Photo via Instagram: @gwladys_dtl
Photo via Instagram: @gwladys_dtl

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Roger Federer vs. Rafael Nadal doesn’t matter anymore, and that’s a frightening thought for the sport. It happened when Novak Djokovic beat Nadal Wednesday at the French Open, the tournament Nadal has owned. A day earlier, Stan Wawrinka beat Federer. And these weren’t just any two matches. This was the end. The new era belongs to Djokovic. He’s fun; he’s great; who knows how far he can take this? Only there’s one other thing: Tennis is in big trouble. Djokovic isn’t going to sell. It’s not his fault. He just isn’t Federer or Nadal. Make that Federer and Nadal. The problem isn’t that Djokovic can’t be a leading man–it’s that he can’t do this all himself. No one can.

He may have suffered only his second defeat in 11 years at Roland Garros, but his stats show Rafael Nadal is still the King of Clay.

Corretja: «Yo creo que tiene tiempo, Rafa no se ha acabado. Es una continuación. Su supremacía la recuperará siempre y cuando vuelva a tener el nivel de antes» … «Le está pasando algo que no le había pasado nunca, pero que a todos, todos, todos les había pasado. Se siente un poco extraño ahí, pero tiene que aprender a vivir con ello y a negociar esta nueva situación. Ha superado retos mucho mayores que ese y es cuestión de tiempo que vuelva», resume Moyá.

Roger Federer’s and Rafael Nadal’s partisans have been sparring for years over which man is the greatest tennis player of all time. Unwilling to be excluded, Novak Djokovic is now making a strong push to be part of the debate. All three men have been nearly unbeatable during their best years. But which player has been the most dominant?

It must be Paris. Playing in the French capital, which in a couple of weeks will host the fall men’s wear and the couture shows, seems to have had a trickle-down effect on the French Open. As the tournament draws to a close this weekend, amid all the surprises thus far — upsets of Eugenie Bouchard, Maria Sharapova, Rafael Nadal — the most surprising thing of all has been the clothes. Over the last two weeks, Roland Garros has not just been an assortment of courts. It’s been a courtwalk.

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19 comments

  1. I just heard that come Monday, he will be #10 in the world. No longer relevant in his present coaching/training/playing routines, changes MUST be made, or we’ll before he reaches 50, 70, even 100 in the world.

  2. Every era comes to an end sometime. Federer and rafa have ruled tennis for the last 10 to 15 years and a record 31 grand slam titles have been shared between them. Both have been dominant performers and tennis world has seen some of their epic encounters. As a rafa fan , I would definitely want to see him come back and play his best tennis again. But a downfall is inevitable for any player s life at some point. So many wins have affected him phyaically. The wear and tear he has gone through after so many injuries, all these things slowly has started to show on him. He is not injured anymore but still has not found his mark in 2015. Its novak s time now. After some years, even he will fade out. Rafa and roger have seen great days of glory. Now its novak s time, then someone else and so on….

  3. as a fans of Rafa,honestly i’m a litle bit upset to see my Rafa is out of Rg 2015 especially loss to his rival Novak….I think Rafa and Uncle Toni also Rafa’s team must be change Rafa tactics and strategy quickly….and they have to….Wimbledon next week….They must increase Rafa speed to hit the ball,improve Rafa’s serve,backhand and forehand….i think Rafa must to stop hit the ball high because i think it just make slowly and weak hint….i mean if Rafa hit tbe ball not to high its gonna be a good spin….sorry to say this…because i.don’t want to see Rafa loss anymore…he must improve her game…nobody(every tennis player) is not a superman including Novak….but looked what Novak did….After more than ten years in Tennis profesional he realise that any/every player on ATP had been learned his game….so he making biggest decicion to “hire” Boris Becker as head coach without “fired” Marion Vajda,the man who bring him on top of the world in his tennis carrier….i think Rafa know in this situation….every player had learned Rafa’s game,Rafa’s tactics and Rafa’s mentally…and they used Rafa’s game to fightback Rafa and they did with easylly…..so really hope that Rafa,Uncle Toni and Rafa’s team do something…quickly…..I want to see Rafa making another history on tennis like he did before….i agree…Novak not better than Rafa and Roger….Novak no class….so fight Rafa…always best for you…..

  4. Djocovic can never win a grand slam 9 times no matter how much he us on top now and he will never be the King of Clay!!!

  5. My French open has ended today and I will not be watching the final tomorrow it will be so boring as Stan will get slaughtered and it will be a very short game .I would have loved Rafa to have won it again but as that was not to be I would have been happy for Andy or Jo-wilfred to have taken it but not the two players that are left .Yes Novak is outstanding at tennis but he doesn’t just love tennis but wants the celebrity status as well he tries to win fans by trying to be funny or other antics but he should know by now that Rafa and Roger have this by being themselves and it is something he will never achieve.congratulations to Andy Murray today as although he lost and Novak will take the French Open THIS YEAR he has stopped him getting to the final by dropping no sets another title Novak would have loved .So the final tomorrow will between a man with a huge ego who fakes illness to put off his oppenent (ring any bells Serena Williams )and a man who at thirty decides to leave his wife and child to concentrate on his tennis both are the complete opposite of Rafa .Come back stronger Rafa we are all rooting for you the True King Of Clay

  6. Yes,My Rafael Nadal is still the king of the clay,No matter what his only the best.And the good attitude he gave to us is so special. His a sport man.I know more opportunity will come to him In his return .He prove that his the only one “The king of the Clay”Vamos Rafael Nadal.I love you!!!

  7. Yes,My Rafael Nadal is still the king of the clay,No matter what his only the best.And the good attitude he gave to us is so special. His a sport man.I know more opportunity will come to him In his return .He prove that his the only one “The king of the Clay”Vamos Rafael Nasal.I love you!!!

  8. Rafa and Roger aren’t going anywhere. They are tennis royalty because they are
    class acts and kind sportsmen and gentlemen and wildly popular with the fans. It
    goes beyond their athleticism and high-level abilities. They still produce great results.

    I am open-minded about all the players because I love the sport of tennis so much.
    But I find Novak hard to like because of his on-court antics, shenanigans and tantrums. He always tries to undermine his opponents by sabotaging their momentum and rhythm.
    It’s just disgraceful. Andy was the recipient of that dirty trick today after he won the 3rd set.
    It’s so childish.
    Rafa and Roger are always well-behaved during a match. Novak may be dominating
    right now being at his peak, however It defies logic how one player can win tournament
    after tournament on all different surfaces in all different altitudes and conditions without
    suffering any injuries or exhaustion. All the other players have been injured, Marin,
    Jo-Willy, Rafa, Milos, Delpo, etc. and the list goes on and on. This Novak is too good
    to be true. I am starting to wonder more and more how a great athlete can produce
    such a result with such ease against other amazing players consistently. It just seems
    to me way beyond natural ability and strength. I feel badly saying this but I often wonder
    what else they put in his gluten free diet. I now rather watch a tournament without him
    so I can watch other players showcase their talent. I can’t imagine tennis without
    Rafa and Roger. Luckily, they will be around for a very long time.

    • You said it perfectly! I also would rather watch anything else, rather than Djokovic. Remember the rude comments that his father made about Rafa and Federer? the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, does it? Know that Djokovic is playing well, but he is not likeable at all, at least not to me. I really hope that Murray beats him…..would rather anyone besides Djokovic to win RG. Don’t care how much he wins, he doesn’t have a smidgen of class.

      • No Betty Walsh, I dare say Djokovic is also as lovable and really humble like Nadal. Federer is actually the arrogant one if you can really break down his facade. Infact, I believe Novak likes Nadal more than Federer. Federer (secretly) dislikes Nadal because Federer would have clearly been the GOAT, but for his embarassing head to head with Nadal.
        Djokovic, on the other hand, is not a pretender. He is very plain-minded and humble. Only a real and true human being can admit to the whole world that Nadal and Rogder Federer made him a better tennis player. So please, let’s not run Djokovic down at all.
        He is also a complete, fine gentleman.

        And yes, Nadal would come back to glory next year only if he retweaks his game. The field has apparently (over the years) being able to successfully master his science, strategy and skills.

  9. Summed up perfectly–Djokovic is no NADAL or Federer–he is playing great but Rafa will be back. And Rafa is the KING OF CLAY–? if anyone could ever match or come close to his RG record. Djokovic just is not as charismatic as Rafa….and his fans are a bit nasty sometimes.

  10. Rafa wi mis you in the French Open.is not the seme ,with you not there.rest and geat stronger.vamos your fans.

  11. Don’t write my Rafa off or Roger they will both show the tennis world that this is just a blip,and Novak,,,,,,,well he just hadn’t got what they have got ,,,,,like-ability ,,,,he’s not in their class ,,,,,,he has no class

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