Rafael Nadal beats Gilles Muller in three sets at Indian Wells [PHOTOS]

Rafael Nadal needed three sets to get past Gilles Muller and move into the last 32 of the BNP Paribas Open.

Rafa took out the first set fairly comfortably despite converting just two out of seven break point opportunities. Muller hit three aces and broke three times in the second set to take the match to a deciding third.  Rafa saved multiple break points in the seventh game of the third before breaking Muller to take the match 6-2, 2-6, 6-4.

After ending a 3-match losing streak in deciding sets, our champ will get a rematch with Fernando Verdasco.

Source: Sportal


  1. My partner said look at this young player called Rafael Nadal since then
    We have watched almost all his games we have been to the heights and to the valleys. We are now pensioners but still love to see Rafa sparkle even though
    He may not win.when Rafa retires I will be loath to be anyone else,s fan I couldn’t,t stand the emotions. Alan &Angela

    • This is exactly my story with Rafa ..i first saw him at Wimbledon in 2007 and have been Mesmurised ever since..an awesome tennis player and a really nice guy..such charisma …I don’t see it in any other player..exciting to watch…and not half bad to look at either…tennis will lose its interest for me when he retires sorry to say…Vamos Rafa

      • Hi Linda
        Yes it will be sad when Rafa goes but his legacy will live on.it will
        Be good to see the progress of his tennis school in Majorca,and who knows
        He may find a young lad that he can coach all the way. Stay interested,its a
        Great game! Alan

      • Hi Alan thanks for your reply..I will always be interested in what he does with his Acadamy..I hate everyone pulling him to pieces about his game at the moment..they seem to forget what this young man has achieved in the world of tennis..it doesn’t help his confidence…he’s adored the world over that’s testament to what kind of man he is

      • Yes Linda
        I find an irritating trend with many today is those who have achieved
        Nothing criticise those who have achieved much.if I ever meet Rafa I shall
        Shake his hand and in my best spanish say ‘thanks Rafa for everything’,

    • Me to Alan nobody’s who have achieved nothing ..commentators mainly..exception Johnny Mac..I to would like to shake his hand ..hoping to see him at Wimbledon this year…i might be lucky..nice speaking to a fellow fan

      • Yes Linda
        It would be wonderful if John Mac, left ‘hander’ could help Toni
        But we will have to see. Not able to get Wimbledon tickets this year but
        A able to get to Eastbourne.more info on Facebook Alan

  2. what was good was attitude in the match but still not seen the angry young men in rafa

    as i aready said the opponent is a tricky one to play with …….. so expecting a length match
    1 set rafa served well except one game and returned good

    but in second muller got his net game up and nadal didn’t serve well

    3r d set he again serve well

    but the embarrassing thing was he was not able to hit 3 to 4 good shots consistently to be in rally and win that……… he was too inconsistent with his hitting deep in the court

    he seems too nervous to hit the forehands

    please rafa find urself in a bisecting position of the court in after every shot for time ur confidence not return

    but happy to cameup with win still thought u should have finished it in the second

    i feel some one have soaked complete energy and power from rafas body………..

    i just hope the more match wins will get this

    rafa u were playing good in mubadala open and doha ……….. so u can repeat that performance atleast
    i am happy ur playing against verdasco ………

    a very best luck for ur match


  4. It is a difficult time for him and he showed his character in winning. That is positive. The crowd was fantastic. This is an important win and now we hope it is payback time v Verdasco.

  5. During his glory years, Rafa would hit dozens of 80-100 MPH forehands in every match. Since then, NOT SO MUCH, because he’s not fully committing to his shots with his forward weight shift, racquet acceleration and follow through. Any coach worth his salt would have spotted and corrected this problem immediately, instead of letting it get worse and worse and worse like Uncle Toni did. It’s so bad now that even with the proper coaching it may be irreversible. Bad habits are tough to break. Especially when they persist for such a long period of time. Many coaches, former players and fans tried to warn him, but our favorite player refused to listen.

    • Exactly, Rafa hits the approach full of insecurity. The result is often a shot that resembles the type of approach that a tennis trainer hits when teaching a pupil how to handle a net player: a soft approach, a bit challenging, bot by no means a pressure shot. A fake approach. Rafa is keeping the rally open this way, makes himself vulnerable, he’s not exactly Boris Becker at the net, he’s capable of finishing off with a volley, but he’s not able to hold firmly when dealing with lobs or passing shots. In other words, the approach should be the hard jab that sets up the killer straight right. Instead, he leaves himself exposed and gets it on the chin.

      • I saw you defending Rafa on another news outlet about the ex minister. I understand why people critisize him a lot because they care about him and want to see him get better as do the ones who love him no matter what. Both care. I just wanted to point that out next time someone takes it personal with jbeer or hates him/her for stating his/her opinion.

        Sadly I’ve given up on changes with Nadal. He is too loyal to Toni and Toni is too old fashioned for change. It hurts I know but I think it’s best to just expect nothing at this point. I expect Rafa to retire in a year or 2 at most. I don’t see him winning much maybe a M1000 at most but man Rafa was so incredibly consistent with the FH like he came straight from a video game I have never seen another player play for 10+ years with such a consistent FH. Sad to see, I never thought this would happen, to see him lose control of that FH. Weird. He used to be able to hide all his flaws with his sick FH but now it opens up all his weaknesses. Ah well.

      • @vamosrafanadal27
        Well i still think he has potential to win at least 1-2 slams. But he is way too stubborn. A change of coach won’t hurt him that much. Look at how Serena Williams found her rhythm back. She spent most of her career with her father coach. But when things changed, she had to change too.


  6. What time does Rafa Nadal start ? Used to get an email telling me but haven’t received it yet ? Desiree O’brien

  7. I finished watching the match. Rafa made the same mistake a dozen times in set 2: going to the net (which made sense) but hitting the approach half court every time. Muller lobbed him or passed him 11 times after such mis hits. The approach, a whipping forehand close to the lines, used to be Rafa’s trademark shot. Incredible how he does not manage to find it back. It’s not even the most difficult shot. A good coach would fix it within a month. A great coach needs a week. Toni needs two years?

    • Toni doesn’t have a clue and Rafa is too distracted by his ever-increasing rituals to see what’s going on. Oh, how the mighty have fallen.

  8. Congrats, and at the same time, we again know not to expect a deep run. Three sets vs Muller is not impressive.

    • I believe Rafa won’t go far in this tournament. So sad but true. His forehand is way too weak compared to his prime. I don’t see anything improved since AO 2016. Weak forehand, terrible first serve.

  9. I was expecting a close match, so I was very relieved Rafa won. It was very windy, but Rafa’s play dipped in the second set while Muller upped his. I was happy to hear all the support from the crowd for Rafa. Now on to the third round and Verdasco.

  10. Much better performance from Rafa vs the doubles match the previous night, especially with his serves. He had 6 double-faults the night before, and hopefully his team is working on that. The second set was terrible, hope he can iron that out of his play. Regardless of the result though, watching Rafa play is STILL a thrill and addictive – he still has the most amazing plays, saves and style! Here’s hoping for a much improved 2016 (though still think a coaching change is needed). Vamos Rafa!

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