Rafa Roundup: How far will Rafael Nadal go at this year’s ATP Finals?

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Nadal and Tsitsipas are joined in their round-robin group by the US Open champion, Dominic Thiem, and the debutant Andrey Rublev, whose tally of five singles titles this year is more than any other player on the ATP tour. Djokovic heads a group that also includes Daniil Medvedev and Alexander Zverev, who have been the most successful players on the curtailed indoor circuit this autumn, and another first-timer in Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman.

“We can find excuses or reasons but, at the end of the day, the numbers are the numbers,” said Nadal. “I think I played less indoors than on the other surfaces, without a doubt… The indoor surfaces have not been the ideal surfaces for my tennis game since the beginning of my career.

”I think I am able to play a little better in the past couple of years indoors than I did at the beginning of my tennis career, without a doubt, but [these are] the numbers. I can’t say something different. I hope to change that this week.”

The fact that he has just broken Jimmy Connors’ record for the most consecutive weeks in the Top 10 ATP Rankings, and recently secured his 1000th ATP tour win, will have been noted. For someone as competitive as he is, adding the ATP Finals trophy to his collection will be a driver because having a missing piece of the puzzle will not sit well with him.

This year he’s arriving in London fit, and off the back of four “helpful” matches at the Rolex Paris Masters. Yes, he didn’t win the competition however he believes that his work in France has provided a solid base for the forthcoming competition.

—209 weeks at No. 1
—351 weeks at No. 2
—57 weeks at No. 3
—54 weeks at No. 4
—66 weeks at No. 5
—11 weeks at No. 6
—15 weeks at No. 7
—7 weeks at No. 8
—12 weeks at No. 9
—8 weeks at No. 10

Running the numbers, Rafa has spent 26% of the time at No. 1, 81% of the time in the Top 2 and 93% of the time in the Top 5.

PHOTOS: Practice sessions in London

  • Friday, November 13
  • Saturday, November 14

VIDEOS:

  • Chatting with fans
  • Santander One: el nuevo modelo de banca

24 comments

  1. Good for Rafa. He said this match would be the key so I hope his confidence has been bolstered to help bring him over the finish line. Still a way to go but at least he has started on a very positive note.

    RAFAMAZING ROCKS

  2. According to ATP News, Thiem doesn’t see himself as the favorite to win the Finals. The ATP calls him a hard-court menace. The following was posted after his win against Tsitsipas.

    “I think especially this year all eight players are in great form and are pretty much on a hot streak as well,” Thiem said. “Rafa and Novak because of all they have achieved and what they are, I think they’re a little bit above the other six.

    “But in general every single one of the eight players can win every match here. So I see myself just as everybody else and every match is pretty much 50-50 and the one who has a better day and the one who is a little bit more lucky [on] this certain day is going to win the matches and the one who has the best week is going to end up winning the tournament. I couldn’t do any predictions at all.”

    HAVE A GREAT DAY TODAY RAFA

  3. Apparently, Diego was asked who he would like to be in his team and he said Rafa, Dominic, Stefanos and Andrey. Diego got the exact opposite. Poor Diego!

  4. I would, of course, love it if Rafa could win, but it will be very hard. I am just happy that he appears to be healthy. How many times has this not been the case? While 2020 has been a miserable year for tennis and the world, Rafa had some memorable moments. His amazing RG crown, the 1000 wins, and the weeks in the top ten are truly remarkable achievements. Many experts are saying that it is unfair that the WTF are played on the same surface every year. I am grateful to be a Rafa fan.

  5. I think it will be very difficult for Rafa to win this tournament, but he has a chance. He needs to win tonight, as the other two round robin matches could be even harder.

    Andrey Rublev practiced yesterday with a left-handed player (the Swiss teenager Stricker) and spent a lot of time trying to hit balls into the far corners of the court, with varying degrees of success. It could lead to a lot of unforced errors.

    Regarding rankings, according to my calculations if Rafa wins 2 RR matches he prevents Thiem from taking the number 2 spot. If Rafa wins only one match, Thiem has to win the tournament, including all RR matches. If Rafa doesn’t win a match, Thiem still has to win but can lose one RR match.

    Vamos Rafa!

    • Did you vote for FAA? He’s listed twice for fans’ favorite doubles team.

      I have already voted for Rafa. I don’t watch doubles as I have a hard enough time watching just two players 😂

      • I voted immediately after I saw your post. However, I needed to go back and change my choice for doubles. Thanks Margo🙏 I voted for Rajeev Ram and his partner because we were on the same flight back to SFO after the Aussie Open, and he was so friendly. Sorry, Rajeev Ram😬 I do watch doubles, but not as much as singles. Sure, you can do better than watching just two players🤣

      • Mimi, I just voted for Rafa again. I plan to vote every day until voting is closed.

        Yes, FAA is listed only once. Mea culpa. Sorry. 😔

      • No worries Margo. I notice we can change our selections, but will it count if we vote more than once?

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