Rafa Roundup: Fabio Fognini now has a problem only with Toni Nadal

Rafael Nadal of Spain (R) shakes hands with Fabio Fognini of Italy after the semi-final match in the China Open tennis tournament at the National Tennis Center in Beijing, China, 10 October 2015. (España, Tenis, Italia) EFE/EPA/WU HONG
Photo: EFE/EPA/WU HONG

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“I’m happy to be in the final obviously,” said Nadal. “It’s a good result for me, very positive one. And tomorrow is a match to enjoy.

“[This result gives me] a lot of important points for the [Barclays ATP World Tour Finals] too,” added Nadal. “I don’t say that I am qualified, but with that result I am much closer to being qualified for the World Tour Finals.

Fognini said: ‘What happened in Hamburg is in the past, for sure. But I have nothing to say with him [Nadal]. I have all respect with him outside and inside the court. I was telling another time, the history was not against him, but against his team, especially the uncle.’

Nadal was quick, however, to play down any suggestion of any lingering issues with Fognini. He said: ‘I don’t know what’s going on, seriously. We had the issue that we had in Hamburg and that’s it. At the US Open, no problems. No problems today. It was a very easy match in terms of attitude for both of us. Very, very easy I think for the umpire.’

Close friend and fellow Mallorcan Moya is also confident that Nadal can find a way transfer his strong practice form to the match court.

‘He just needs to win a couple of those tough matches, the ones he would always win in the past,’ he said. ‘He’s started losing those matches. It’s happened to all the players in the world but it’s a new situation for him. He’s healthy, which is the most important thing, but it means the problem is a mental thing. But I’m really sure he’s going to get over it next year. To get to number one again it could be tough because Novak is so strong, but for sure he will compete for Grand Slam titles again.

“We’re working on how he moves, but mostly we need to get his forehand back. That’s what he’s been missing the most this year. But recently at training it’s been better, we just now lack the safety of knowing that he can repeat those sequences over and over again.”

“Tennis is Rafael’s life,” Toni said. “As he earned enough money he could have picked whatever he wanted to, but he still chose tennis. Because he loves it.”

Is he just getting older? Is the game evolving? Those two things are inevitable. Or can he, as Toni maintains, rise again with his old game? History says yes. But the recent history of tennis also says that change is good, even for veterans in their 30s. Rafa need only look at Federer’s work with Stefan Edberg, and Serena’s work with Patrick Mouratoglou, to know that you can teach an old champ new tricks.

Rafael Nadal of Spain autographs to spectators after winning the men's singles semifinals match against Fabio Fognini of Italy in the China Open tennis tournament at the National Tennis Stadium in Beijing, Saturday, Oct. 10, 2015. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)
AP Photo/Andy Wong

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17 thoughts on “Rafa Roundup: Fabio Fognini now has a problem only with Toni Nadal

  1. Very good play dear Rafa……You played GREAT!!!!!!!!! …… BEAUTIFUL….score not reflective ……Congratulations again for making the Finals & coming up with your AMAZING Tennis!!!!!!! : ) Best wishes moving forward to your next tour!!!!!! : ) Take care of the foot & God bless you!!!! Best regards!!!! VAMOS!!!!!!!!!!! : )

    Like

  2. VAMOS DEAR RAFA!!!!!!!!!!! : ) : ) : ) YOU ARE LOOKING FANTASTIC OUT THERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LOVE YOUR BEAUTIFUL ENERGY ON THE COURT & YOUR AMAZING OUTSTANDING SHOTS & SERVE!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) : ) : ) VAMOS SWEETHEART & GOD BLESS YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ENJOY YOUR SMOOTH GLIDE & HAVE A FANTASTIC TIME!!!!!!!!!!!! MUCH LOVE & HAPPINESS!!!!!!!!! : ) : )

    Like

  3. elaine

    Please just go out there and enjoy the match today. It’s a great achievement that you have reached the final given all that you have been through in 2015 and the criticism you received. Of course we all want you to win and see you ‘bite’ that throphy but whatever the outcome is it is progress on your way back to your best form. Vamos Rafa!

    Like

  4. Maica leone

    MOIS JE TE DIS TOUT SIMPLEMENT BONNE CHANCE RAFA ..JOUE TON MEILLEUR TENNIS , CROIS EN TOI TU LE MERITES..GAGNER OU PERDU PEUX IMPORTE AVANCE ET TU VERRAS LE BOUT DU TUNNEL,TU ES UN BATTANT ET TOUT VA PAYER ..VAMOS ! RAFA ON T’AIME ET ON EST AVEC TOI …

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  5. Rafagirl

    So glad Rafa won that match with Fognini. He looked so happy and releaved. Rafa has nothing to prove. We know he’s a great tennis player and I just want him to stay healthy and keep playing. Win or lose I’m behind him.at this stage, he just should enjoy himself. He doesn’t need the extra money, and he’s already made history. So let’s just enjoy the game as it is. Novak is a great player as Rafa himself admits. He is making his history now.

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  6. Carol

    Some posters don’t know what else to say and as better he is playing as more those posters are getting upset lol. I’d like to know of whom they really are fans, Roger or Novak? lol again

    Like

  7. so what ! If Joker wins tomorrow no big deal ! Joker is on top of his game and Rafa been there done that and he definitely can’t win them all, he’s only human and not a robot !Rafa has been going through so many issues on his return after his surgery for appendicitis and other injuries he played amazing for all these years and I personally am happy to know Rafa is healthy and playing he’s a champion to the heart and a great inspiration to many young people out there also a fighter who can motivate anyone when they are down never give up ! Keep going to the last point ! Rafa a champion always !

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  8. Rafa_1310

    @Move in Rafa or move on

    “Toni is more than a cheerleader than a coach?”

    Are you crazy? Rafa and Toni won together 14 GS, 27 masters, Olympic-Gold-Medal and many more things. Toni and Rafa are a great team, they are just strong together.

    Sorry, but i have no respect for your comment!

    Vamos Rafa and good luck for tomorrow!

    Like

  9. Move In Rafa Or Move On

    Fognini is right about Uncle Toni’s unprofessional behavior in Hamburg where he clearly tried to distract the Italian with his frequent gestures and histrionics. That’s bush league stuff. I’ve never seen any other ATP coach do that – although truth be told, Toni is far more a companion and cheerleader than a coach for Rafa.

    Like

  10. Elizabeth Howard

    Fabio Fagnini’s problem is himself and his temper. He has a great game but lack of self control is an issue that he is unlikely to change at this stage.

    Good to see a vote of confidence for Rafael from Moya and Corretja and say that he will return to his best form and so say all of us. Vamos Rafaaaa

    Liked by 1 person

      1. midgie

        Oh good Lord. Frankly, you are becoming a parody of yourself. That should be embarrassing for someone who thinks so highly of himself, but sadly, I suspect it is not.

        Like

    1. Great Thinker

      Lizzy,
      ,
      Still Great Thinker thinks Rafa will lose to the Unbeatable Djokovic tomorrow , but we’d see.
      Like my cousin, Deep Thinker, suggested Rafa should have ‘strategically exited’ to avoid meeting Novak so that the Head to Head against Djoker will continue to be in Rafa’s favour.

      Now when Rafa loses tomorrow, the Head to Head will reduce from 23-21 to 23-22.
      Not good for Rafa’s legacy at all!

      Like

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